18th International AIDS Conference: Opening remarks
I am very happy to be here with you today – and to have the opportunity to focus on an issue that I am deeply committed to: new generation leadership in the AIDS response. In my role with UNAIDS, I consider helping to strengthen young leadership to be my most important task.
We are at a crossroads and we need young people to be at the forefront of our efforts today.
Therefore established leaders must stand up and support the younger generation in all possible ways. We need broad youth engagement – at all levels.
This involves making sure young leaders are given the opportunity to grow, through giving them the space to lead and the love and support to fully reach their potential.
This should not only be done because we owe it to them, but also because we owe this epidemic to fully draw on the knowledge of the people who live at the heart of this disease.
I know that important work is already being done to promote young leadership. I am looking forward to learning more about ongoing and new initiatives, and to discussing how – together – we can make them work in the best possible way.