CHOICE BLOG

Appointment new youth ambassador

On the 13th of September the handover event will take place at the Humanity House in the Hague to celebrate the appointment of the new Dutch Youth Ambassador for Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR) for 2017-2018, Melodi Tamarzians. The youth ambassador is appointed by the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs and CHOICE for Youth and Sexuality. The youth ambassador is part of CHOICE’s International Advocacy Program.

‘I think it’s very special that this opportunity exists within the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs’, says Melodi Tamarzians. As the Youth Ambassador for Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights, Melodi will focus on universal access to safe abortion and SRHR in fragile settings. She will discuss these themes with young people in national and international contexts.

A voice for young people
Melodi Tamarzians will succeed the current youth ambassador, Sanne Thijssen. The latter will pass over her title during the ceremony and present the impact she has made during her time as an ambassador. As the third youth ambassador, Melodi will give young people an official voice in the development of Dutch and international policies concerning SRHR and young people. The youth ambassador works closely together with policymakers at the Ministry and the Dutch Ambassador for SRHR and HIV/AIDS, Lambert Grijns. About this collaboration Melodi says: ‘As a youth ambassador, I get the chance to critically question whether young people are thought of when policy is made, often this is not the case yet’.

Equal partners
The Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs and CHOICE for Youth and Sexuality started a partnership in 2014 to set up a structure within the Ministry which ensures young people’s meaningful participation. The Ministry and CHOICE see young people as equal partners, essential for the fulfilment of sexual reproductive health and rights. During the handover event Lambert Grijns – Ambassador for Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights and Zoë Nussy – Executive Director for CHOICE for Youth and Sexuality will speak.

Want to know more about the Youth Ambassador? You can also check out her Facebook or read about the previous handover event