Jose Mateo Dela Cruz is an educator and a long-time youth development advocate from the Philippines. He is the education coordination team, Asia-Pacific regional focal point at the United Nations Major Group on Children and Youth, the United Nations General Assembly mandated space for the children and youth sectors. He is also an ASEAN MYWORLD 2030 advocate under the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal action campaign.
He is a member of the Students Opposing Slavery, a student and youth campaign network under the President Lincoln’s Cottage in Washington D. C., a network that is a recipient of the 2015 United States President’s Medal of Freedom.
For several years, he served the youth sector in various volunteering and policy consultative roles in several intergovernmental agencies and international organizations such as the UNFPA Philippines Youth Advisory Panel, UNESCO Regional Unit for Social and Human Sciences in Asia-Pacific Youth Advisory Panel, the MTV End Exploitation & Trafficking Youth Advisory Group, International Youth Alliance for Family Planning, IOM X (the UN Migration Agency & USAID campaign to end Trafficking) Youth Leaders Group, Youth Power - Campaign for Global Goals Accountability at Restless Development, and the Canadian International Education Policy Working Group – Youth Advisory Council.
From 2013 to 2014, he has served as ASEAN Youth Eco-Leader and as a mentor to the ASEAN Youth Heritage Leaders under the ASEAN Youth Volunteer Programme of the National University of Malaysia, supported by the Ministry of Youth and Sports of Malaysia, Ministry of Education of Malaysia, USAID and the ASEAN Secretariat.
During the 2014 United Nations World Conference on Youth in Sri Lanka, he was one of delegates representing the Republic of the Philippines during the intergovernmental negotiations on crafting the Colombo Declaration on Youth. This outcome document served as one of the inputs to the post-2015 Development Agenda.
From 2015 to 2018, he served as one of the negotiators to the United Nations Philippines Youth Technical Working Group and his efforts led to the creation of the United Nations Philippines Youth Advisory Board, the voice of the youth in crafting policies and developing programs helping the United Nations System Philippines in its role in supporting the Philippines’ government.
Due to his experience in youth development, he has been concurrently designated in various youth advocacy and policy roles in international organizations and multi stakeholder processes. This includes the Youth Working Group of the Global Campaign for Education, the global network of CSOs and NGOs on education, Youth Advocates Group of the Global Partnership for Education (hosted by the World Bank Group), Experts Advisory Community of the Family Planning 2020 (hosted by the United Nations Foundation), and OneChild, the premier organization inspiring a movement to end child sex trafficking.