Ah, youth. So much to say. But if we keep it on the political level, I have to admit to a deep suspicion about any initiatives that target youth, especially in Tanzania. So in order to check my thoughts, I asked one of my colleagues about this whole youth-focus thing that politicians, the government and civil society are selling lately. We discussed why buy-in has been low: youth, like anybody else, know when they are being used for purposes outside of their own interests. So how do youth organize, what do they do? Tons of stuff, actually. And some institutions do get their youth-engagement right. They tend to be the ones that are, surprise surprise, founded and run by... youths.
Which might explain why most of them are in the entertainment or ICT sectors and not so much in, say, accounting ;) Anyways, having confirmed my suspicions by consulting all of one "youth" this week's article in The East African is centered around a suggestion. What would happen if we respected "youth" as regular, capable people and got out of their way. What if we stop telling them what their interest is and respect their choices so long as they are legal. What if we just get out of the way. That's it.