U-Report’s ultimate goal is to voice young people’s opinions on issues that affect them, so that real time information can influence social change. That’s what U-Report Mexico looked for when asking Mexican u-reporters their ideas to help government improve public initiatives on education, health, and employment, and that’s what the program achieved when being recognized by Mexican government as one of the key tools from promoting youth participation.
On August 13th 2015, 130 U-Reporters attended a live event and 228 followed the online streaming. During the event U-Report enabled live participation to solicit ideas. 55 ideas in education (31%), wellbeing (29%), life free of violence (21%) and health (19%) were received. Participants identified problems in the quality of the education that they receive as the major challenge that Mexican youth faces (54%). They also identified other key challenges: The need of free mental health and psychological services (31%), access to health for youth people who have left their parents (25%), and guidance on how to get a job (35%). But U-Report doesn’t just gather information, as it looks to ensure that U-Reporters’ voices are heard.
That’s why, the data gathered was then used by Mexico’s Youth Institute to feed their country plan on youth engagement strategies. Later, Mexico’s Federal Government acknowledged U-Report as a strategic tool for driving youth participation, as the country’s administration launched gob.mx (website concentrating all government info), where U-Report was openly recognized as one of the country’s four major tools for civic participation towards influencing public initiatives. Congratulations U-Report Mexico: this kinds of acknowledgements are key towards the goal of helping young people influence issues that directly affect them.
Jaime Archundia, Innovation Lead for UNICEF Mexico states “U-Report allows Mexican young people to actively participate in the ideation of new education, health and employment policies aimed to enhance youth life opportunities”