What you can do during International Development Week (IDW)


Grade 11 student

Christ The King Catholic Secondary

Georgetown, Ontario


THIS year will mark the 25th anniversary of International Development Week. This week runs from February 1–7 and it highlights what Canada and Canadians are doing to make a better world for everyone to live in. IDW is designed to provide a platform for both men and women (especially youth) to contribute as well as learn more about development on an international scale. As global citizens, Canadians should be proud of what they have achieved in volunteering and how they have helped people internationally. Being a youth that is outgoing on both the local and international level, I will discuss how you can participate actively in International Development Week.

IDW is designed to encourage youth and allow for youth to be active during this week. Some ways that youth can participate in IDW is to learn more about what international development really is, organize an activity in the classroom or in the community and even take part in one of the many activities being held in Canada. International Development is the idea of helping third world countries that face problems such as poverty and lack of education or healthcare. Canadians have always been at the forefront of helping in these situations by going abroad to build schools, raise funds for a family to raise a farm or even influence health care professionals to setup clinics in third world countries.

Youth should also take the opportunity to organize an event in the classroom during this week to learn about the feats that Canadians have accomplished in terms of international development. The best way to do this is make everyone in the class to research these projects that have happened abroad and present them to the class. Not only is this a neat project but it also might interest some of the youth in the classroom to pursue the ideas of assisting people on an international level. In the community, youth can hold a conference or seminar about the benefits of international development. Volunteering at this level provides for some great experience and youth should take the advantage in their adolescence to be a part of it.

Our very own province has a council dedicated to international development known as Ontario Council for International Cooperation (OCIC) that is running events all week long for the awareness of IDW. Some of the events that OCIC is offering for the province include a webinar on the ongoing challenge of Ebola and the OCIC Careers in the Global Health Panel. Be sure to come out to some of the events that the OCIC is offering in order to gain a better understanding for the reason behind why Canada is such a big supporter for international development. As the founder of Peace Welcome Club (PWC), I also feel that it is required for us as Canadians to help nations that are developing as much as we can and what better way to do this than welcoming them to our country.

I believe that encouraging newcomer youth to help is also a great way for all youth to get together and assist development internationally!