Friday, August 14, 2009


This year’s International Youth Day is themed: SUSTAINABILITY: Our Challenge. Our future. And as always (hopefully), young Change-makers across the world will be marking the day in different ways! What will you be doing to celebrate the event locally? “It is a myth that in order to be a change-maker, one has to give up a part of one’s life. We ask youth to imagine using their passion as a way to affect change. We ask youth to live their passions in a way that makes a positive impact in the world.” Says Jessica Rimington, the founder of One World Youth Project.

What does it mean to use one’s passion to affect change positively? Well, this year’s International Youth Day celebration by Global Xchange volunteers in Lagos will turn the usual pyramid of IYD celebration upside down by stepping out of the norm (conference, conference, conference!) and presenting the challenges of sustainability through a photo exhibition. With their backpacks slung over shoulders, catching cheap buses that connect different states in Nigeria, young photographers will capture the realities of this generation in lens and present them in pictures worth 5000 words.

On the D-day, August 12 2009, an exhibition tagged “Photo for Life” will be staged at the British Council Lagos to celebrate IYD in a creative way. Photo for Life, an Exhibition of photographs from the heart of Africa, is aimed at using the Art of photography to create an engaging means of involving young people to be active in building community. Considering the need for youth to embrace the challenge of sustainability in its fullness, young people need to tell their stories using images with a focus on impacting community and creating an engaging form of expression through photography with the hope of not only telling the story accurately but also motivating other youths to take action to effect positive change!

Photo for Life will feature photos from Olayinka Taiwo a young landscape photographer based in Lagos Nigeria with a passion for the Art as well as other young photographers passionate about using their talent/passion to impact their community positively.

Youth action, inclusion, and their full participation are key to developing today’s world for the generations of today and tomorrow and central to a sustainable existence.(UN IYD). The British Council Nigeria and Voluntary Service Overseas Abuja since 2006 have encouraged youth participation in developing their community through their Global Xchange IYD Celebration. Here is calling out to all young people out there to stand up and be counted- express yourself positively through your passion and be committed towards working for a positive change to build a more sustainable future!

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