For youth living in vulnerable communities, Voices of Youth Maps provides a tailored platform to help enhance critical thinking skills, share youth created maps and location based reports, and facilitate communication between youth mappers about their living conditions and civic mapping achievements. Through the information and support tools provided by Voices of Youth Maps, youth are empowered to use social and other digital media to confront important issues in their communities and advocate for change.
Brazil and Haiti are currently being highlighted and promoted on Voices of Youth Maps. In Brazil, adolescents mapped various communities to point out environmental issues, whereas in Haiti, the initiative focused on identifying the risks and vulnerabilities of adolescents to HIV infection and sexual abuse. Voices of Youth Maps seeks to expand its community globally, bringing forward the collective voices of young people and create change in the lives of many.
The Voices of Youth Maps platform and suite of tools enables community organizations to train young people to collect actionable data on issues affecting their communities. Aggregated reports serve as a powerful tool to promote interventions by the community and its leaders to achieve desired changes.
Young people are introduced to the concept of digital mapping through a set of workshops and activities focusing on digital engagement, youth empowerment and community advocacy. A featured tool from Voices of Youth Maps is UNICEF-GIS – a youth-friendly mobile mapping application that produces web maps and visual reports on youth-related issues.
The information is verified by UNICEF and shared through online channels and offline outreach to generate collective action for positive community transformation.