The government is "ever more determined" to include young people in decision making, either in the public or private sector.

This was revealed at a graduation of nine students this morning who have successfully completed the Diploma in Youth and Development Studies from the Commonwealth Youth Programme South Pacific Centre in Honiara.

Speaking at the graduation ceremony, the Minister for Women, Youth and Children, Hon. Peter Tom, said that the government recognizes how young people must be active partners in the development process, rather than seeing them as victims.

"Government is sensitive to mend young people as stakeholders in their own right and participate fully in the development process," says the Minister.

Hon. Tom added that providing conditions will enable youths to participate actively in all aspects of building the nation.

The Minister said that in furthering the government's policy objective for youths, the Ministry's Corporate Plan recognizes two key areas, education and employment opportunities for young people.

He admitted that while these areas would need strengthening, "my Ministry believes that targeting these key areas would not only contribute to [raised] self esteem but would also enable better education ..."

Hon. Tom stressed that the vision the Ministry aspire on its Corporate Plan "makes your role as potential youth workers even more crucial".

"... if we can engage youths in decision making, education and employment, we will be better placed to benefit from their energy, enthusiasm and skills, and less likely to be reacting to the issues that risk not only the youth themselves but also our nation," he added.