Engaging the Youth Community in Environmental Management: A Participatory Approach
Keywords:community engagement, environment, youth, environmental pollution, health, action plan, national youth participation
Youth, an asset of the community, can contribute its strength in environmental management. Pakistan currently has the largest group of youths (10-24 yrs), nearly 54.2 million individuals constituting 34 percent of its total population. These numbers are expected to increase to 64.8 million by 2025. The main objective of this descriptive research article is to propose the strategies by which youth communities can be utilized as an active agent of change for improving the environment for sustainable development in Pakistan. First, this paper identifies the importance of the youth population of Pakistan to participate in local environment upgrading. Next, the paper deals with the building of a community engagement framework which is based on five basic levels: information, consultation, involvement, collaboration and empowerment of Pakistan's youth population. Furthermore, the paper discusses all the possibilities and limitations a youth community can face for implementation of this participatory strategy in the field. In addition, keeping in view all the existing social, economic and political conditions, a set of suggestions is given for making youth community engagement possible at representative local levels. Finally, the paper sums up the importance of this participatory approach to achieve sustainable development in Pakistan through the most vital part of population, its youth.
Permanent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2047/d20002607