Young leaders friends of Unicef discovering U-Report, a SMS based social plateform alors accessible via Facebook and Twiiter, with more than three million users around the world, aiming at engaging young people and gathering their opinion on social issues for positive change. Abidjan U-Reporters. U-Report is a social platform created by UNICEF, available via SMS, Facebook and Twitter where young people express their opinion and be positive agent of change in their communities. Côte d'Ivoire is the 35th country to join the movement an U-Report it is more than 3 million users worldwide. U-Report is composed of three parts: A survey component that allows young people to express their opinion on different social topics, an information component that allows young people to ask anonym questions and report events that take place in a community and a discussion component that allows young people to connect with other young people about the issues that concern them. The goal of U-Report is to strengthen community participation in public debate to find solutions to the problems young people face in their community, allowing them to influence decision-making powers for positive change. In Côte d'Ivoire, U-Report is part of the youth engagement program. It is more than a tool, it is a movement.

If you’re in your 20s be Intense, Restless

When you’re in your 20’s you should throw yourself at something. Be intense and restless. Possess a kind of obsession for greatness in some fields and shun mediocrity in all its forms. You have a blank cheque to write just anything you want.

I’m telling you what many of us wish we were told. And yet this opportunity is only once in a lifetime and it separates people into almost two different species. It places them in income brackets and lifestyles that are so hard to change from later in life.

You can say at this age your life is like wet concrete available for you to carve a path in any direction. But this concrete is slowly hardening and by mid-thirties it’s a hard rock.

Responsibilities have kicked in. Habits have taken root. Risks are very expensive. Major lifestyle changes are nearly unaffordable.

So? Get out of bed. Play guitar. Try roller skating. Join a vibrant club or society and travel the country. Walk into high offices and beg for mentoring from your idols.

Learn a foreign language and write it all over your social media. You have the freedom to be awkward now. You can make many blunders and nobody cares because you’re still young. This is your unfair advantage. But it won’t last forever. Seize it!

Today I woke up to a 10-page Word document sent by a 22-year-old lamenting her ordeals at the hands of her boyfriend of a similar age.

Don’t allow yourself to be consumed by these things. Your feelings are hot and they crave indulgence but you must channel them to a passion instead. Of course, this is easier said than done but the minority who do it end up ruling over their colleagues who didn’t.

This period has a very definitive magnifying effect. What you do with it magnifies throughout life. You reap 100 fold of what you sow in your youth.

During my time I loved motivational speaking and so I went around talking to schools at every opportunity I could get, paid or free. I was just obsessed with it.

The funny thing is that the students I talked to appreciate it to this day. Many still contact me to say I changed their lives without them knowing they changed mine as well by helping me avoid drawbacks and launch my career to an almost unfair advantage.

I wasn’t sure what I was doing then, but the other day when I drove by one of those schools I paused there and wept.

The things I told them back then have since turned out to be disturbingly accurate predictions. Our destinies took shape according to what we gave importance at that time.

Take heed young friends, take heed.

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