Youth Assemblies as Springboard to Leadership Ikhwan Omar, Youth and PWD

“Whatever your goal is, create your own path. Don’t allow yourself to be used for someone else’s interest and make sure that your own and your people’s interests come first.”

Coming from the vast county of Lamu, in the coastal region, I have had the advantage of participating as a beneficiary of the Oslo Center program through the Youth Assembly model. The model of the Youth Assembly has had a significant impact in imparting skills and knowledge among the young people in Lamu through training on policy development, and social accountability and creating platforms of engagement where young people take part in dialogue and Barazas to identify and highlight key policy issues affecting the citizens in the respective sub-counties.

By so doing, our leadership skills and capacity to engage with not only the citizens but duty bearers have been sufficiently enhanced. I pride myself as an immediate testimony of what the program was able to achieve, as I successfully offered myself candidature in the concluded elections for the seat of Member of County Assembly, Mkomani Ward, and garnered 866 votes.

Despite not being successful in the general elections, my contributions in articulating policy proposals on issues affecting the community earned me an appointment as Director of Coast Development Authority, a position I hold with utmost diligence and offering service to the people of Lamu and Coast region at large.