National Youth Congress 2018 on Smart Cities

The National Youth Congress (NYC2018) will be hosted in Kampala at Ndejje University 25-27 July, 2018 focusing on the role of youth in advocating for good governance that leads to the implementation  of the New Urban Agenda (Habitat III) and the National Green Growth Development Agenda (NGGDA). 

The National Youth Congress (NYC) is an initiative of TEENS Uganda working with a consortium of partners and collaborators that bring together young people in Uganda to deliberate on key and emerging issues in a bid to suggest local solutions. The previous NYC processes acted as bases for generation of evidences for influencing national and local processes that affect the day-to-day livelihoods of the youth. In 2013, the NYC centred on deliberating and generating evidence on the rising youth unemployment and generated ideas that were adopted in the framing and development of the Youth Livelihoods Programme and building on the Youth Venture Capital Fund.

Since adoption of the Millennium Development Goals in 2000, there have been improvements in the quality of life of millions of urban inhabitants. However, the persistence of multiple forms of poverty, growing inequalities, and environmental degradation, remain among the major obstacles to sustainable development worldwide, with social and economic exclusion and spatial segregation often an irrefutable reality in cities and human settlements. Consequently, there are several interventions that governments have launched. Unfortunately, youth majority of whom live in urban areas have been largely excluded at different decision levels evidenced by the lack of interest in implementation as a potential source of new energy and manpower.


Population studies explain that more than half the world’s population lives in cities and that in the next fifty years the proportion will increase to two-thirds. Whereas only 2 out of 10 people in the world were lived in urban settings nearly a century ago, these numbers have increased greatly with urban populations now out numbering rural populations. Presently, 1.8 billion people - more than a quarter of the world's 7 billion people - are between the ages of 10 and 24, making this group largest ever to be entering adulthood and the largest under-represented segment of the world’s population. About 85%of world’s youth live in Developing Countries, which are struggling to provide jobs and services to this burgeoning population which is increasingly migrating to urban areas. Between 2000 and 2030, Africa’s urban population, which has the greatest percentage youth, will grow from 294 million to 742 million (155%)! For development to be achieved, no one can and should ignore this population!


Since launch of the Green Economy Initiative (2008, UNEP)) Uganda through the National Planning Authority (NDPII) launched the Uganda National Green Growth Development Strategy (UGGDS) to operationalize the Global 2030 Agenda, Uganda’s Vision 2040 and National Development Plan (NDP II) by taking steps in implementing principals such as green growth that are embodied in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Determined to take youth actions forward, TEENS Uganda is a strategic partners with UNEP under the Ecosystems Based Adaptation for Food Security Assembly for Africa (EBAFOSA), hosts of the Uganda Sustainable Transport Network for advocacy promotion of Non-Motorised Transport (NMT) with support from UN-Habitat and the Dutch Cycling Embassy, and partners with UN-Habitat in the promotion of Renewable Energy and Energy efficient Technologies as well as One-Stop Youth Centres programme across the region including the East African Community.  To domesticate further, TEENS Uganda co-organised the 1st International Science Conference on Bio-Waste Recycling in Uganda (2016) leading to a Ndejje university Energy Centre, Green Habitat Youth Initiative (GHYI) with a model initiative at St. Kizito High School and other multiple University initiatives.

Investing in all youth groups particularly those from the most marginalized communities from the new urban places (dwellers), and remote areas as well as those with disabilities will ensure the success of the 2030 Development Agenda and the New Urban Agenda Post 2015 and Habitat III Global Agenda’s. It is  against this backdrop, that TEENS Uganda and a collective of partners is spearheading the NYC2018 to provide Youth Change-Makers, Champions a platform to discuss, interrogate, design and promote strategies and actions that promote inclusive urban communities for innovative, socially minded, green cities.

New Urban Agenda:

The New urban Agenda (NUA), the core topic of the congress also recognizes the use of ICT for smart infrastructure development with the ability to respond in real time to users’ needs to boost innovation, create new leading to condition-based maintenance, reduced down time and greater operational efficiency of the infrastructure overall. The impact of this will lead to transformations in the approaches to design and construction as well as step changes in improved health and productivity, greater efficiency in design and performance, a low-carbon society and sustainable urban planning and management.


Over 2000 young people: experts from governments, youth networks and movements, schools, research and development communities especially those from Ugandan and Sub-Saharan Africa


“Accelerating the Contributions of the Youth towards the Implementation of the New Urban Agenda – Taking Small Actions for Innovative, Socially Minded and Smart Cities”  to foster intercultural learning and exchange among youth groups, governments, and development practitioners from the different parts of the world.

Aim of the National Youth Congress

Position youth as concerned, thoughtful citizens who are capable of influencing action and driving change in their societies.  


The youth congress will host an interactive multidimensional expert capacity workshop for sharing project led experience and programmes aligned to the National Development Plans towards achieving middle income status. The congress has also host a guided ecological and city excursion for youth delegates and partners for continued learning experiences and in order to introduce the UN concept of Hack-Earth-On on the New Urban Agenda.

This will be done in face-to-face plenary and break way conferences, as well as exhibition of Youth led initiatives. About 200 youths will be selected and invited as resident delegates and the rest will attend one special session and visit exhibitions.


Improved capacity for the youth, to turn ideas into actions for sustainable future cities and communities

Increased awareness of youth issues at local, national and regional level

Established Youth Knowledge and Skills One-Stop Center open to enhance research capacities.

Better involvement of youth in the Implementation and Monitoring of the Sustainable Development Goals, Green Growth Strategy and the New Urban Agenda

Strengthened capacity of participants to effectively deal with issues of urban sustainability, employment generation, governance, Bio-Safety/Bio-Diversity, Energy Efficiency and climate change.

YouthDeclaration which serves as a guideline for youth to address the key issues

Start date: 
Wednesday, July 25, 2018
End date: 
Friday, July 27, 2018