CHOICE at the State of the World Populaton Report Launch

CHOICE at the State of the World Populaton Report Launch


In February, the Youth Advocates from the National Advocacy Group at CHOICE were asked to deliver a pitch at the launch of the World Population Report. They were asked to do this by Rutgers, the leading centre of expertise on SRHR in the Netherlands who were responsible for the launch of this report. 


The World Population Report 


The World Population Report is an annual report dedicated to tracking developments in SRHR globally, such as family planning, HIV, AIDS and maternal health. This report was published for the first time in 1994 as part of the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD), which is part of the United Nations. 



This year, 2024, marks the 30th anniversary of the World Population Report. This milestone provides an opportunity to reflect on the successes and challenges of the past three decades, while also looking ahead to the next 30 years. Central to this forward-looking perspective are the youth and future generations. To engage these key stakeholders, Rutgers reached out to young people within various SRHR organizations. These included youth representatives from political parties, NGOs, and youth-led SRHR groups such as CHOICE. They were invited to present their views on the report and share their vision for the future. 


CHOICE's input 


CHOICE represented the voice of young people to be involved in developing domestic and foreign SRHR policies. Most importantly, as we pitched during the launch: Participating is our fundamental right, it is not a favour. Rather, giving our views is a favour to improve the government policy.”  


Additionally, we advocated for more accessible financial support and grants for youth organisations. This currently requires a lot of administration, “while young people often still go to school or are studying and have limited financial means to take care of that as well.” 


On top of that, we encouraged the government officials that they “need to think outside of the bureaucratic box.” Currently, government officials are only focusing on the traditionally paved ways of youth engagement, while many young people are actively engaged outside of those. Government campaigns for youth engagement are not effective, as they exclude young people by simply not meeting their needs, demands and ways of engaging with SRHR topics. 


Next steps 


At CHOICE, we are committed to collaborating and providing input from a youth perspective in a meaningful and inclusive manner. We were delighted that several organizations, both during and after the event, showed interest in our contributions. One notable example is our input on sustainability within the public health and SRHR services of Amsterdam. 


Additionally, we were invited by the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs to offer our youth perspective on their foreign SRHR policy. We look forward to working together to make policy documents more accessible and youth-friendly, while navigating the complexities of bureaucratic civil service workflows. 


The report offers an important snapshot of our progress and the challenges that lie ahead. United with other young people, we are dedicated to improving SRHR over the next 30 years.