What else can I say about this eventful two day journey. KIPPRA stands for The Kenya Institute for Public Policy Research and Analysis, basically they advise the government and other organizations on all matters public policy. Think along the lines of The Big Four agenda and Vision 2030. There were some recognizable names in attendance during this momentous occasion; The Dean of Students for the University of Nairobi, Dr. Linda Mutua the KIPPRA Chair, Mr. Fred Simiyu who served as a representative of the KIPPRA board. This was no ordinary seminar, there were students form various universities who came to contribute to the common goal of providing insights on how better to move our country forward. Students present were from University of Nairobi, Daystar University, Technical University of Mombasa, Kenyatta University and Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology among others.
There were varying topics addressed in order to sensitize the youth on matters public policy and help them better understand their role in this process even on a national level. This was mainly addressed during a discussion coordinated by and among students themselves regarding the Big Four Agenda. For those unfamiliar with it, the Big Four Agenda is centered around providing Affordable Housing, Manufacturing, Food Security and Affordable Healthcare. Highlighted was what were the targets of each of these areas entailed and challenges face in achieving set targets. There was a question and answer session where many concerns by the youth were made known.
Vision 2030 was also a key discussion. What is vision 2030? How does it affect the youth? How much progress has been made in achieving set milestones? These issues were addressed intensively and even feedback was received from the audience since the main aim of this forum was to actively have a conversation on how to better the ideals set at a national level since they affect us all.
Another key issue looked at is patents and copyrights. The youth are seen as the most creative and innovative section of society hence it is vital to secure and nurture this talent to grow. To do this, it is essential to protect ideas of the youth against other malicious entities from benefitting off the efforts of others. This is done through patents and copyrights, thus it is key for the youth to understand how they work, the process to attain them and where they apply. Other outlined topics were national values and the Public Policy Making Process
Oh, and lest we forget, there were amazing presentations such as John Kotoo who presented a spoken word. Those who participated in the online essay competition were awarded certificates of participation as well as branded t-shirts. This would motivate them to continue their good efforts in furthering the national conversation on public policy.
This forum was important in order to engage with the youth as they are major stakeholders in the future of the country. It was noted that not many engage with materials containing information about public policy made available to the general public. Thus, the degree of success of this two day journey is dependent on how proactive the youth will become in future endeavors pertaining public policy. Hence, it is vital we all contribute to this national conversation, since we are all in this together