A youth leader from the Federated States of Micronesia says young people in her country are struggling to find their voice and highlight their needs.
Yolanda Joab Mori said he hopes to leave the Pacific Youth Leaders conference in Fiji this week better equipped to help young Micronesians.
Ms Mori was among 40 young leaders from the region discussing health, education, the environment and Pacific leadership and other issues, at the Suva meeting.
"These kinds of spaces are so important because young people, it's hard for us to have a voice and to break into spaces of leadership. So platforms like this make it so much more attainable and highlights the needs of young people."
"Those are some of the challenges we face back home so being able to be a part of a network like this will really translate into leadership back home," she said.
Yolanda Mori also hopes to engage the young people in the FSM to effect positive change in their communities.
Ms Mori believes the conference is an opportunity for the Pacific to be a part of something great, to have a voice and to make a difference through positive contributions in their respective countries.
The young leaders were challenged on issues like climate change that threaten their existence.
Fiji's Assistant Minister for Youth, Alipate Nagata, urged them to focus on the four pillars of the conference: civic leadership, the environment and resource management, education, economic and social development.
"Advocate for environment and climate, resource management, education, health and well-being and economic development which will have an impact on our social progress as a community," Mr Nagata said.
He said Fiji and its neighbours constantly lived with the fear that one day their country would be taken by the sea.
"This is the threat of climate change which is affecting our economic and social development and giving rise to climate induced resettlement.
"While we can conclude that we have to live with climate change we must not forget that we can still drive change in our existence to alleviate this dilemma for our future generation," Mr Nagata said.
He also urged the young leaders to educate their communities and help sustain their resources.
Mr Nagata added that this should not only apply to the environment but to a wider anatomy of Pacific communities.
He challenged the young Pacific leaders to advocate for change and volunteer their time, skills, knowledge and enthusiasm to stimulate the quality of life in their communities.
Mr Nagata also urged them to find ways to positively influence individuals, organizations and issues and contribute to the common good of the people.
"Young leaders, you have the energy to make change and help your peers be aware of their self-worth. Instill in them a sense of pride which will help them make good decisions about themselves and enhance their self-value," he said.