This letter, written by 3 members of the Plan UK- Restless Development Youth Governance and Accountability Task Team, was sent to United Nations Permanent Missions of New Zealand, Zambia and Burkina Faso. Feel free to change and adapt this to create your own letters, sharing your experience and passion for good governance with decision-makers at the highest levels.

Permanent Mission of New Zealand to the United Nations

295 Madison Ave, 41st Floor,

New York,

United States

26th September, 2014

Excellency,

We, as young people representing the voices of youth, would like to formally introduce ourselves as members of the Youth Governance and Accountability Task Team. The aim of this Task Team is to advocate for the meaningful inclusion of young people in decision making processes, ensuring that young people work hand in hand alongside adults in policy formulation and implementation. This Task Team comprises eleven young people from around the world and is an initiative spearheaded by Restless Development and Plan UK. In May 2014, these two organisations invited us as young people to share our experiences as grass roots practitioners.  Based on our learnings and primary research a report was developed entitled “Partners for Change: Young people and governance in a Post-2015 world“.

This report highlights the challenges that young people face, including social norms and attitudes towards young people. It also speaks on the types of spaces available to young people which range from created or invited, to formal and informal spaces, bringing out the complexities of these spaces and what they mean to young people. In addition, it brings out the aspect of decentralisation and what opportunities, or lack thereof, can come from it. Some of the recommendations that came out in the report are that young people must be equipped with practical skills, confidence and knowledge that will allow them to get involved in decision making processes. At the same time, it is important to also build the capacity of decision and policy makers on how to meaningfully involve young people in their work.

While in New York for the 69th General Assembly, we have been a part of, and spoke at various side events. These included the launch of the “Partners for Change” report, hosted by the Government of Peru, as well as many other events hosted by the Department for International Development (DFID), the Open Government Partnership event, United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and others.

As a group, we are calling for a standalone goal on governance in the post-2015 agenda, with the role of young people clearly defined as part of this goal. We hereby want to call upon your office to work with us to ensure that the Post-2015 framework does justice to the millions of young people who have called for the importance of good governance through the MY World Survey.

We would appreciate it if you could share this letter and attached report with your Post-2015 leads, and Youth Ministries in your country.

We are looking forward to a response from your Mission here in New York.

Best wishes*,

Andrew, New Zealand

Lombe, Zambia

Cheick, Burkina Faso

*Surnames and contact details have been removed from the online version in the interest of privacy

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