Government departments aim to make cities more youth friendly

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A new set of opinions jointly issued by 17 Chinese departments urge cities to regulate the development of youth social organizations and increase the number of volunteers providing services for young people.

The departments include the Central Propaganda Department, Cyberspace Administration, Central Civilization Office, National Development and Reform Commission, Ministry of Education, State Ethnic Affairs Commission, Ministry of Civil Affairs, Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security, Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development, Ministry of Culture and Tourism, National Health Commission, the State General Administration of Sports, National Bureau of Statistics, National Rural Development Bureau, and Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.

According to the “Opinions on Launching the Pilot Program of Youth Development-Oriented Cities”, constructing a youth development-oriented city refers to policies promoting people-centered new urbanization strategies, implementing the concept to prioritize youth development, and satisfying the diverse and multi-level development needs of youth.

The goal of building a youth development-oriented city by 2025, according to the opinions, is to establish a functional urban youth development planning mechanism as well as an effective evaluation system, reach a social consensus of prioritizing youth development, boost young people’s willingness to participate in urban development, and continue to release more systematic and inclusive urban youth development policies.

The measures proposed to stimulate young people’s interests include supporting charities, participating in voluntary services on a regular basis, and voluntarily contributing to cultural soft power. Young people should be encouraged to participate in social governance, especially grass-roots governance, according to the document, which requires regulation of the development of youth social organizations and volunteers.

The opinions specifically highlight the importance of more young people joining community-level social organizations and volunteer services based on their interests and hobbies — using Weibo, WeChat and other social media platforms to share their experiences.