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Welcoming a new YPARD Steering Committee member: Sebastian Pedraza Paez

SebastianWe are delighted to welcome a new steering committee member: Sebastian Pedraza Paez

Sebastian is a Colombian youth leader who has relevant experience in rural youth issues. He is a graduate with an Associate Degree in ICT from SENA and currently finishing an Associate Degree in Music Production from  Latin American professional audio foundation Center. He also has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political science and public management from the International  University of La Rioja and has carried out several studies in the development of projects and public policies.

Sebastian currently works in Apoyar Foundation and the Jovenes Emprendedores Association (Asoje)  in Colombia, where he is an advisor in the management and formulation of projects. Since its creation and for the last six years, he is a board member and member of the communications team of the National Rural Youth Network of Colombia.

For more than seven years, he has participated in the formulation and implementation of different projects that contribute to social and rural development in different parts of Colombia and in some countries in Latin America.

One of these initiatives is the National Rural Youth Network of Colombia, an initiative that seeks to empower rural youth, through training processes, facilitating access to opportunities, initiating the creation of public policies, so that these generate initiatives, that allow them to remain in the rural areas, and generate development in their territories, within the network, with Asoje and the Ministry of Agriculture, has participated in the design of training processes and empowerment of rural youth.

Sebastian personally had the opportunity to participate in the creation, strengthening and consolidation of the network, besides contributing to the replication of similar initiatives with youth leaders from Peru, El Salvador and currently in Mexico, he has also collaborated and participated in different international conferences with institutions such as IFAD, FAO, Procasur, and Rimisp.

On the other hand, he had the opportunity to create and manage the project Artec Paz, a project that seeks to empower children and youth so that they promote peacebuilding through art, technology and culture, this initiative was one of the 6 Urban Peace Laboratories financed by the UN-Habitat and the Sena in Colombia. in recent years Sebastian has been working  advising the formulation, and management of projects, especially with rural communities, rural youth and children, with a focus on sustainable development goals

It is no longer strange to go to some rural area in the world, in a country like Colombia, and to find few or no young people working in rural areas. A worrying situation, since they have been forced to move to the cities in search of educational and work opportunities that allow them to improve their quality of life. Yet despite all these obstacles they exist rural youth who love the countryside, who want to make their life projects in it. They want to stay, but they need the minimum conditions to have a decent life for them and their families. It is a personal challenge to work for youth to access opportunities easier and empower them to generate development from their territories.

"YPARD is a perfect space to address these challenges, is full of talented leaders with creative ideas, I am convinced of the immense potential of youth, who more than us can know better our contexts, and join efforts in the search for a more sustainable world. I feel honoured to be part of the steering committee of YPARD, it is a great challenge and an opportunity to take the voice of young people to new scenarios where it has not been heard, I am excited, and I hope to contribute the best of myself, and work to develop new ideas, and contribute to the growth of this great family”

 Welcome on board Sebastian Pedraza Paez! 

You can contact a steering committee member via steeringcommittee@ypard.net