International Youth Day

International Youth Day is celebrated on August 12 each year to recognize efforts of the world’s youth in enhancing global society. It also aims to promote ways to engage them in becoming more actively involved in making positive contributions to their communities.

International Youth Day promotes the benefits that young people bring into the world, celebrate and mainstream young peoples’ voices, actions and initiatives, as well as their meaningful, universal and equitable engagement.

Many countries participate in this global event, which may include youth conferences on issues such as education and employment. Other activities include concerts promoting the world’s youth, as well as various sporting events, parades and mobile exhibitions that showcase young people’s achievements but with COVID19 here with us most of the activities shall not happen.

2020 Theme: Youth Engagement for Global Action

The theme seeks to highlight the ways in which the engagement of young people at the local, national and global levels is enriching national and multilateral institutions and processes, as well as draw lessons on how their representation and engagement in formal institutional politics can be significantly enhanced.

Enabling the engagement of youth in formal political mechanisms does increase the fairness of political processes by reducing democratic deficits, contributes to better and more sustainable policies, and also has symbolic importance that can further contribute to restore trust in public institutions, especially among youth. Moreover, the vast majority of challenges humanity currently faces, such as the COVID-19 outbreak and climate change require concerted global action and the meaningful engagement and participation of young people to be addressed effectively.

This year’s International Youth Day seeks to put the spotlight on youth engagement through the following three interconnected streams:

  • Engagement at the local/community level;
  • Engagement at the national level (formulation of laws, policies, and their implementation); and,
  • Engagement at the global level.

 

What Can You Do?

Think about what you can do in your community and how you can effectively spread the message. Here are a few tips:

  • Educational radio show. Contact popular local/national radio stations to request a slot to have a discussion with distinguished individuals and youth.
  • Organize a (virtual) public meeting or debate to discuss young people’s contributions to global issues especially COVID-19 Pandemic.
  • Organize a youth  virtual forum to exchange ideas and discuss cultural backgrounds in order to help young people accept others and popularize a culture of non-violence.
  • Organize a (virtual) concert to promote International Youth Day and the launch of the Year. Invite your local musicians and combine it with a panel discussion or invite a politician or policy maker to hold the key note speech.
  • Write to your Minister of Youth to inform him or her about the challenges young people face in their daily lives and to suggest solutions.

Handling the COVID-19 crisis in the society as a business

Indeed, Covid 19 has demonstrated quite starkly how various business models are quite fragile. At the moment, most enterprises are struggling to protect their workers, ensure business continuity and make decisions in a period of economic uncertainty. This is no easy task, however it provides businesses and other institutions an opportunity to re-examine their purpose and even more importantly its alignment in addressing some of the biggest challenges our societies face today.

How can a company leverage on its unique strengths to serve those most affected by the crisis?

For large organizations, a shared value approach would be to offer services or products that can serve those hardest hit by the crisis e.g. 3M’s increased production of hand sanitizers, masks and respiratory equipment or Uber’s partnerships with restaurants and other food providers to ensure food is delivered seamlessly to those healthcare workers working around the clock.

When it comes to employees, there are some companies that are taking a different approach. Take for example, Walmart providing two weeks pay for full and part time employees diagnosed with Covid19. Or Lyft which is offering financial assistance to employees who get diagnosed with Covid 19.

Creating shared value is about thinking through what core competencies an organization has and then aligning those to dealing with a recurrent social challenge or set of challenges. Ultimately what a sustainable business must do is to look critically at the challenges  everyday ‘man or woman’ face e.g. issues to do with affordable housing, education, access to healthy, affordable food, etc. and how they can leverage their business model to address some of these core challenges. Another crisis I fear going forward could be the effects caused by climate change in the future-businesses should start thinking about tailoring solutions for that one.

Ultimately what business’ must do is to forecast their environment as much as possible taking note of changes in trends and future crises that are likely to occur and then think through how they can address those issues from a strategic perspective.

Finally, there is not an easy way of defining purpose and creating shared value especially when it comes to smaller businesses that are financially constrained. However, with some innovation and collaboration it is possible.

COVID – 19 Pandemic

How can business owners support employees both during and after the COVID – 19 Pandemic and its importance to the business.

How can business owners support employees both during and after the COVID – 19 Pandemic and its importance to the business.

The coronavirus crisis is a world-changing event. Workplaces and businesses can contribute to the transmission of respiratory pathogens, such as the virus that causes COVID-19. It is important for these workplaces to implement appropriate public health measures to prevent and reduce the spread of COVID-19 amongst employees. Cityscape trends have changed their operating procedure standards i to limit the spread of the virus. We have also cushioned our employees during this crisis in the following ways:

Public awareness

Employers can support their employees during this pandemic by training them on the disease and how to protect themselves from it. Cityscape Trends has implemented this initiative by using signs in their offices e.g. wash hands here, sanitize always .etc. We have also trained every individual in our station.

The support enables the employees to be fit health wise and protect themselves and their loved ones from the disease.

This increases productivity in their daily duties during this crisis.

 

Provision of Protective Equipment

High Standards of hygiene are highly encouraged during this pandemic. Our company has ensured we do hourly sanitation in sensitive surfaces such as door handles, toilet flash handles, rails, lifts, table tops and computer accessories such as mouse, keyboard e.t.c.

Our employees are also provided with PPEs for their own protection. We have also trained our employees on how to use to prevent contamination. This is to ensure their safety which makes a happy and productivity personnel at workplace.

 

Healthy Friendly Cleaning Solutions

In line with UN SDGs all our detergents are prepared from organic substances which are friendly to human health and the environment too. The detergents are eco-friendly and have a soft care effect on the hands of the cleaning operatives.  This reduces rate of further allergies during this COVID-19 pandemic. We have also improved on housekeeping caybox for every person to ensure they can have all tools, detergents in one kit to sanitize all areas efficiently. We also got cloths for specific roles such as deep sanitation of premises.

Fair Pay

Employees are vital people in our business. They ensure the organization is running during this pandemic. As a pay-back we have ensured our employees receive a reasonable wage according to UN goals to support their families and all those who depend on them. We have also supplied them with essential health products such as sanitizers and face masks which meets WHO standards to protect them from the disease. The fair wage cushions them during this hard times and the coming days after the pandemic.

Good wage improves staff retention rate which saves valuable time and money for recruitment process. This is good for the business reputation and the industry as a whole.

If we follow the government directives we shall be able to overcome the disease and go back to normality. Stay Safe, Stay home. We shall overcome.