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Youth from Río San Juan asks for attention for their region | Jun 17, 2008

The youth committee from Río San Juan interviewed during their visit to
Despite its attraction and potential, Río San Juan has been and continues to be a region largely disregarded by Nicaraguan authorities; that is the viewpoint of a group of representatives of the Youth Departmental Counsel of Río San Juan. This group, which brings together over 30 people from this Nicaraguan region. has presented their opinion to national authorities and to the press during an active visit to Managua during the second week of June.

The small delegation that visited the capital was made up of three young members of the youth counsel and one member of the Fundación del Río, an organization taking care of socio-environmental activities in the Río San Juan department, and which supports the initiative. "What we want is to demonstrate what these young people do, we want to make known that the youth of Río San Juan is doing important things for their community", said Saul Obregón, young member of the foundation mentioned before.

Even though the group was not able to hold all meetings they were planning on, they did meet with representatives from the Instituto de la Juventud, the Red de Alcaldes and the Consejo Nacional de Universidades, as well as with organizations such as Amigos de la Niñez y la Adolescencia, the Asociación de Municipios Integrados por la Cuenca y Territorios de la Laguna de Apoyo (AMICTLAN) and Desafios. They were also interviewed by several television channels and national news channels, just like they interviewed by

"There is no recreation in Río San Juan. There are no jobs. We want to avoid that young people go to other countries and we want to unite all young people", said Alida Calderón, vice coordinator of the departmental youth counsel. For this youth, authorities and adults have not achieved anything in a long time, and they therefore decided to start expressing themselves and to look for solutions.

Their objectives are concrete. They want attention from decision makers in different areas: recreation, with the construction of libraries, sport fields, theater rooms, as well as other things; the environment, with reforestation programs, talks by experts, training and a decline in mining activities, for example; and in health, with special attention to the topic of sexual and reproductive health. Another important proposition is the creation of regional establishments of state universities, to improve access to public education.

Their main motivation for taking action with this visit to decision makers in Managua, was getting to know the laws and rights that apply to their intentions. "We are not asking; we are demanding the application of the corresponding legal framework", explained Saúl Obregón.

Besides the two members mentioned before, the commission consists of María Mercedes Zambrana and Ángel Castro. The Department Youth Counsel of Río San Juan is composed of 38 different groups (environmental, sports, evangelist, and more), bringing together over 600 youngsters from the municipalities of San Carlos, San Miguelito and El Castillo. They are currently working to integrate different groups from the entire department, located in the south of Nicaragua.