The original story was published in The Myanmar Times on 23 August 2016 and written by Pyae Thet Phyo. To view the original story, click here.

U-Report amplifies the voices of the youth to help shape Myanmar’s Youth Policies.

A social messaging tool called U-Report, deployed by the Department of Social Welfare and UNICEF, intends to collect opinions from youth in order to draw up the Myanmar Youth Policy.

Currently, it has about more than 1000 members across the country, member Ma Pwint Phyu Thant said at an event in Nay Pyi Taw last week. “It is not a group doing political activities,” she said.

The social messaging tool – which exists in 25 countries and kicked off in Myanmar in July 2015 – will help young people to get and exchange information, said Department of Social Welfare director general U Soe Kyi.

“First, we will collect information through questions and answers from young people, and then upload that to our website,” he said. “Our department will review the information about health, education, environmental conservation and natural disasters. Depending on the information we get, we will provide public education programs. So we need the voices of young people.”

Ma Pwint Phyu Thant said the information gathered would be used to shape the Myanmar Youth Policy. Social Welfare Department Director U Aung Kyaw Moe confirmed this.

“If we learn their opinions, assumptions and demands through this program, we can consider them in drafting the policy,” he said.

In April, the program began selecting youth representatives across the country, he said. That process will be finished in September.

“We will start discussion about the framework and the data related to the youth policy in October,” he said. He added that the government is expected to release the draft of the youth policy by the end of 2016.

Young people interested in the program can join at or via its Facebook page, UReportMyanmar.

To view the original story, click here.