INCREASING YOUTH PARTICIPATION IN ALL ASPECTS OF CLIMBING AND MOUNTAINEERING
The UIAA Youth Commission held its annual meeting on the weekend of 17-18 November in Setenil de las Bodegas, Spain as guest of UIAA member federation FEDME – Federación Española de Deportes de Montaña y Escalada. The Commission were treated to a warm welcome by the town’s mayor, local dignitaries and members of the Andalucía section of FEDME. The Commission had a very successful meeting discussing a number of important topics including the future of the Youth Commission, the strategic plan for the Global Youth Summit events for 2019 and beyond and how the Commission will work with national federations to develop youth participation in all aspects of mountaineering and climbing.
The Commission decided to place more emphasis on social media and to reach out directly to the target market of the youth themselves. To achieve this. members of the Commission will work with the national federations and the UIAA Office in Bern to make this happen. It was also decided to widen the number of youth events that the UIAA Youth Commission is involved with to allow national federations to register their local and national youth events, camps and meetings with the UIAA and allow for mutual promotion of these events, in a tiered system below the main Global Youth Summit events. An online tool will be developed for this.
The Commission also paid homage to one of its longest standing representatives – honorary member Alexander Zaidler who was associated with the Commission for 25 years and sadly passed away in August. His daughter Tatiana – who is now an expert for the Commission – gave a moving tribute to her father and his work with the youth events around the world. The Commission also said goodbye to Miguel Sánchez Cánovas whose term with the Youth Commission ends after a number of years of great service. His final act was the impressive hosting of the meeting. The Commission would like to thank Miguel for all his hard work over the years.
For President Mark Dennison (BMC, UK) and the Commission there are a number of interesting projects to develop at an exciting time for its future as the UIAA seeks to engage more directly with the youth bodies of its member federations and provide further opportunities for youngsters across the world to develop their interest in climbing and mountaineering.
The UIAA Youth Commission is in the process of updating its Youth Handbook and guide on how to organise an event. This will be available on the UIAA website shortly.
Report and photos by Rob Adie/UIAA Office