Sinn Féin MLA and Junior Minister Jennifer McCann said young people are the key to building a better future.
Speaking at an event organised by Peaceful Schools International the West Belfast MLA said:
“Our young people represent an enormous resource for our community as we move forward.
“It is our responsibility to give them the confidence and the best opportunities possible to enable them to play a full and active role in building a better future.
“They have the right to grow up in a safe and positive environment free from sectarianism, prejudice and hate.
“A society where they are valued as an individual and not for who they are, where they come from, or for their perceived beliefs.
“Building relationships and challenging old attitudes, which cause division and fear is crucial if we are to move forward.
“Our children and young people are the future leaders and need our help and support now to build a society with equality at its core.”