The celebration of Labour Day, June 19th, which has its genesis on Charlie King junction, Fyzabad in 1937, has been celebrated as a symbol of strength for the Labour movement in Trinidad and Tobago. The events of 1937 are also significant to youth and student movements in Trinidad and Tobago, as they joined forces in making an invaluable input with the labour movement. This landmark event that occurred in 1937 has its position of opulence in the history of T&T, and in the livelihood of proponents of the mass movement and people based organizations in this country. Some view the historical events of 1937, in isolation of the life of Tubal Uriah Buzz Butler. As a result of the occurrences of 1937, a oneness among our people was evident; several people rights based organizations were born; political parties, trade unions, and in subsequent years we saw women’s movements and the one that matters most for us, TYC members, in the years 1949 – 1951 the birth of the Trinidad Youth Council under John La Rose. The youth councils’ involvement in the politics of the day and the close affiliation to the Trade Union movement aided in the 1970 reform of Trinidad and Tobago at that time. In this current dispensation of the TYC we aren’t as radical or involved in the party politics of the day,
The youth councils’ involvement in the politics of the day and the close affiliation to the Trade Union movement aided in the 1970 reform of Trinidad and Tobago at that time. In this current dispensation of the TYC we aren’t as radical or involved in the party politics of the day, however, we share the same progressive thinking and desire to see societal change, therefore we work with and alongside the progressive trade union movement as we seek to fulfil our core mandate of youth representation and advocacy. This year was no different as the Trinidad Youth Council came out in full to support our comrades in the union movement, a total of fifty (50) young people marched the streets of Fyzabad, voicing concerns as it relates to decent work for young people, accountability, honesty and integrity within the country. Young persons in attendance also took the opportunity to raise issues related to their communities, as we marched along the street from Avocat junction to Charlie King Junction Fyzabad. The resident public spot on the platform for youth among the progressive trade union movement continues to be a vital instrument for the struggles and voice of our nations’ youth to be broadcasted across the length and breathe of Trinidad and Tobago.
Take a Seat Take a Stand
The Trinidad Youth Council embarked on a community outreach and membership drive through our campaign “Take a Seat, Take a Stand”. It provided an avenue for young people to speak out on issues affecting them and suggest innovative and creative solutions to the issues they raised. This campaign was designed to acquire information on issues affecting youth in both urban and rural communities, thus creating accurate data for the youth council to ensure effective, targeted programs and delivery of services to our nation’s youth from the Trinidad Youth Council. The layout of the project accommodated information booths regarding TYC and other stakeholders. At the centre of this display was a couch conveniently placed to draw attention to the dialogue being raised by the youths who participated and voiced on the issues that they take a stand for and on the direction that the young person’s took the discussion.
Our pilot for this project was held at the University of the West Indies’ (UWI), World Social Work Day event on Thursday 19th March, 2015 from 10:00am to 3:00pm at UWI under croft. A total of 15 young people between the ages of 18-29 spoke on a wide range issues affecting them such as domestic violence, crime and violence, unemployment, child abuse and prostitution. Each contribution was documented via video recording, edited and a trailer video was created and shared via our social media platforms as start of the social media campaign.
The second leg of the project took place at Chatham Youth Facility wherein ten (10) young men from the camp participated in the dialogue. The issues they raised include: domestic violence, gang war/turf war, poverty, crime and violence, discrimination, stereotyping, racism and unemployment.
Sports and Family Day
Over the last nine (9) years Trinidad Youth Council has hosted our Sports and Family Day. The purpose of the event is to create a youth friendly space to facilitate engaging and dialoguing with our young people in a safe and enjoyable atmosphere where we will employ the use of fun and recreation as a developmental tool towards educating and making young people more aware and informed.
In addition, this event sort to unify young people from various District Youth Councils (DYCs) for a day of solidarity, excitement, entertainment, education and most importantly fun.