Young people make up one-third of the total population in Bangladesh. National development policies ensured youth skill development and involvement in decision-making, particularly at the local level, but actual involvement of youth in decision-making and access to participatory practices is still very limited.
Therefore, this project aims to achieve equitable engagement of young people at local level decision-making, particularly at the urban governance of city authorities through initiation of urban youth councils in Bangladesh. First, the project will create urban youth councils in four cities including Chottogram, Mymensingh, Rajshahi, and Rangpur so that youth can participate as elected ‘youth councilors’ in the city governance mechanism. Second, the project will advocate for establishing a youth participation model (Urban Youth Council) in other local government bodies, so that the project impact is realized, and outcomes sustained.
If the Urban Youth Councils are established, youths in the targeted four cities will have a formal mandated space in the municipal governance to voice their issues and secure rightful services and opportunities of empowerment, access to decent employment, and ensure meaningful and inclusive democratic participation in the city management.