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Activity update week ending 30 September 2013
National Youth Development Trust
October 03, 2013


Full Council Meeting: The Bulawayo Youth Council (BYC) met to discuss the logistical arrangements of a planned city clean-up campaign. The BYC intends to hold a citywide clean-up campaign as a way of providing service to the Bulawayo communities. The campaign is also aimed at increasing the visibility of the BYC and mobilising young people to support the various community initiatives that the youth councillors take up in their respective communities. The campaign will be held in partnership with Radio Dialogue to generate hype around the Clean- up activities and the Bulawayo City Council that is expected to provide the cleaning equipment.

International Day of Peace Commemoration: The National Youth Development Trust in partnership with the Bulawayo Youth Council conducted a meeting at Mpopoma Hall on the 25th of September 2013 to commemorate the International day of peace. The commemoration was held under the theme: “Education for peace” and was aimed at educating young people on the need to uphold peace in their communities as it was important for spearheading development. Representatives of the Mpopoma Residents Association, the Councillor and the Member of Parliament’s (MP) office were present at the meeting.

Young people were encouraged to become peace ambassadors as young people have been used as tools to perpetrate violence. The BYC vice chairperson, Hope Senderamayi urged young people to refrain from substance abuse which was identified as one of the catalysts for violent behaviour amongst young people. As a recommendation the youth council was tasked to bring more youth programmes to the ward as most young people were unemployed. These programmes would serve the purpose of developing the ward whilst occupying young people in order to desist from partaking in wayward behaviour.

Additionally, young people were urged to develop life skills that would help them become better community leaders. The representative of the residents association emphasised on the need for respect for a community to function at its best capacity.


Sports for Peace Tournament: The National Youth Development Trust held a Sports for Peace festival in Ntabazinduna on Thursday September 26, 2013. Six (06) soccer and four (04) netball teams participated in the one day tournament which was aimed at bringing the youths in Ntabazinduna together to discuss peace building and conflict transformation as a community regardless of political affiliation. The local leadership, that is, the councillor and village head, acknowledged the work done by NYDT in Ntabazinduna. They said that youth voter turnout increased significantly this year as a result of a campaign by NYDT that sought to encourage the positive participation of young people in elections. They also highlighted that there were no cases of politically motivated violence although young people differed in political ideology. The young people also expressed gratitude to NYDT for encouraging them to have political debates without being violent against each other, saying this had made them more tolerant of different views.

Sports are a major form of recreation for youths in Ntabazinduna as the community has even gone to the extent of creating a league with 16 soccer teams. The NYDT regularly provides support for the league as it is a creative way of keeping the unemployed youths from criminal behaviour. Sports for peace tournaments are used by NYDT to bring together young people in the communities to engage each other in a youth friendly environment and promote peaceful coexistence.


Political Parties Forum: The organisation facilitated a Political Parties Forum at the Gwanda hotel on Saturday September 28, 2013. The forum was held under the theme, Setting The Youth Agenda: Priorities For the New Zimbabwean Cabinet. Representatives from Zapu, MDC-T, and MDC attended the meeting while the Zanu-PF representative could not make it. Thabani Nyoni from Bulawayo Agenda also made recommendations from a civil society perspective. Some of the key issues identified by young people included the need for the new government to provide access to education, health care, employment, amongst other issues. They also highlighted the importance of evenly distributing the country’s wealth without disadvantaging other regions. Young people were encouraged to organise themselves into properly and make use of well researched facts to lobby government for youth friendly policies and programs.

A contentious issue at the meeting was the fact that communities are not consulted before government undertakes projects. They highlighted Joshua Mqabuko University in Gwanda as an example. Young people said that while Gwanda was a mining town, there were very few schools in Matabeleland South offering the science subjects necessary to enroll at the university. As such, they said the university was located in their areas but would not service students from their region.

The meeting provided an opportunity for young people to discuss their own priorities that cabinet ministers should take note of if they are to be of service to the youth constituency.

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