MENAACTION, a youth-led and focused nonprofit organization, is designing the Middle East and North Africa Region Youth Monitor (MENARY Monitor). MENARY Monitor is a weekly newsletter, a compilation of English, Arabic, French, Farsi, and Turkish news items from trusted sources in addition to insightful comments. MENARY Monitor will be distributed on weekly basis to government institutions and policy makers, international organizations, researchers, and other relevant stakeholders. The main objective is to provide these stakeholders with trusted, accurate, and accessible updates on all matters concerning youth in the MENA region to save them time and effort and provide them with the points of concern requiring action.
MENARY Monitor aims to become the main source of all news and updates concerning youth of the MENA Region. In doing so, it looks to provide policy makers, international and local organizations, and researchers with accessible, accurate, and timely updates, news items, commentary, and analysis to guide them towards the needs requiring action.
MENARY Monitor seeks to achieve the following objectives:
Strategies to Achieve Objectives
1. An increase in youth specific policies across the region which are relevant to the needs of and issues facing youth.
1.1. MENARY Monitor will be delivered to policy makers of the region on weekly basis. Policy makers include government organizations, legislative institutions, judicial institutions, and other local government bodies. The Monitor will provide them with updates and policy implications to guide them towards addressing these implications and improve the conditions of young men and women. MENAACTION and MENARY Monitor will keep track of all youth-relevant policies and produce commentaries and analysis along with policy recommendations and assess the extent to which they are adopted.
2. An increase in relevant, efficient, and effective programs targeting youth in the region.
2.1. MENARY Monitor will also be delivered to a list of local and international nongovernment organizations along with major donors. The Monitor will include news items, updates, and policy analyses, providing them with entry points for their programs. MENAACTION will keep track of programs conducted following the establishment of MENARY Monitor and assess the extent to which these programs respond to the challenges discussed in the Monitor. Then, MENAACTION will revert to the organizations with recommendations on how to enhance the relevance of their programs.
3. An increase in news reports on youth of the region, as more stories get covered, and more implications policies on youth are examined
3.1. MENARY Monitor will also be shared with the sources it will rely on. These sources will see that their news pieces are reaching, consolidated, to important actors. They are, thus, expected to enhance their coverage of youth-related issues.
MENARY Monitor will primarily serve to enhance the conditions of youth in the MENA Region, who are under the age of 30 in all countries of the MENA Region. They face a number of issues including lack of agency in the political process, socioeconomic disenfranchisement, restrictions on human rights and personal freedoms. This is documented by many global indicators, including Freedom House. Additionally, young people in the Middle East are generally perceived as a burden on society, perpetrators or victims of violence, rather than an opportunity and agents for change and development. Globally, only 1.9% of all elected representatives are under the age of 30 in spite of the fact that young people are voting more than before, and showing improvements in voter turnout rates, when compared to other age groups. Youth also face major restrictions on their personal freedoms particularly freedom of speech, as the number of young political prisoners is increasing on daily basis.
In addition to youth, MENARY Monitor targets policy makers, local and international nongovernment organizations, and researchers.
Within two years, MENARY Monitor will become one of the main resources of all youth-related news, updates, and policy issues in the MENA Region. The more widespread it gets, the more it will be able to bring its desired benefits. These benefits are as follows:
* Policy makers are provided with updates and policy implications to guide them towards addressing these implications and improve the conditions of young men and women. Their policies will be monitored weekly, and they will be provided with recommendations to improve the relevance and efficacy of such policies.
* International and local nongovernment organizations will be provided with information that can support their needs assessments, thus, improving the relevance and efficacy of their programs. MENARY Monitor will provide them with recommendations on the areas requiring action along with recommendations on improving their ongoing programs.
* MENARY Monitor will benefit news agencies and sources by bringing them more eyes to their products, and in turn, they are expected to continue on and enhance their coverage of youth-related issues.
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