Youth and Informal Settlements: Engagement for Global Action Online Summit

Date: 12 August 2020, International Youth Day

Start Time :
8 am New York
3 pm Nairobi
8 pm Kuala Lumpur

Host Organizations

● Ministry of Environment and Urbanization of Turkey
● United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat)
● Balıkesir Municipality, Turkey
● Habitat Norway


The COVID-19 pandemic has hit the world’s most vulnerable people the hardest, including the one billion people living in informal settlements and slums worldwide. These areas are densely populated with inadequate water and sanitation, little or no waste management, overcrowded public transport and limited access to formal health care facilities. It is very difficult for people to follow many of the suggestions by the WHO such as socially distancing, and masks can sometime be an extra burden on already low incomes.

Youth play a critical role in the emergency response to the COVID-19 pandemic. They have been the first responders to this public health crisis. This Summit will review what has happened to date, lessons learned and best practices about the COVID-19 fight in the informal settlements globally including but not limited to the topics of slums, refugees and socially, politically and economically disadvantaged groups. The Summit will draw in experts from youth-led civil society, academia, local and national governments, marginalized communities, and other stakeholders.

UN-Habitat will also use this even to launch consultations on its Youth and COVID-19 Policy Brief, which outlines the challenges youth face, and what ways they have sought to overcome them and take a leadership role. The goal of the summit will be to chart a path forward to defeat the virus through supporting youth and community group action.