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Empowering change-makers through youth-led programme design

Empowering a generation of change makers through youth-led programme design

The world is facing huge development challenges. Climate change threatens livelihoods, biodiversity and water supplies, and young people particularly struggle to get into employment or earn a living.  600 million young people are unemployed or not in education or training. This figure is set to grow.

Young people are a significant and growing part of society. More than half of the world’s population of nearly 7.5 billion people are under the age of 30 – the biggest youth generation ever. They are often excluded from decision making that affects them because of lack of knowledge, skills or voice – It is vital that more opportunities are created for youth to transform their lives and make a lasting contribution to their communities and the world.

Seven youth representatives from Raleigh’s national societies and staff teams from Nepal, Nicaragua, Tanzania and the UK came together for a five-day programme development workshop to design a programme that catalyses youth as agents of change. The programme aims to build capacity and sustain youth-led civil society organisations (CSOs) in Nepal, Nicaragua, Norway and Tanzania to support and develop youth-driven green enterprises through a skills-based corporate exchange programme.

Gerald, Raleigh Tanzania Society Coordinator, speaks about the programme’s thematic area:

“There’s a common problem of youth unemployment and the damaging effects of climate change across all our countries and now we are linking the two together. We know that many people are dependent on making a livelihood as a priority, but they need to consider the environment in their enterprise activities, as climate change will have a greater effect on them and their livelihood in the long term, and probably even short term.”

The workshop, conducted in Morogoro, Tanzania was supported by NOREC (Norwegian Agency for Exchange Corporation) – an agency which places reciprocity as a core value – meaning that everyone contributes to and benefits as partners. Partners share knowledge and competence between people in various countries and cultures through innovative collaboration and mutual goals.

Prior to the workshop, national society representatives held focus group discussions and engaged wider society members to contribute their ideas and garner an understanding of the situational analysis of green growth and youth unemployment in their various countries. Francela, Raleigh Nicaragua National Society, said:

“My key learning is that you must first understand the basis of the problem to make a sustainable impact. The most valuable thing has been the way in which we have translated and communicated the voice of our national societies. From the very beginning we held focus groups with them which has allowed us to translate young people’s voices into the project design.”

Throughout the workshop youth participants shared their knowledge and built skills in analysing the context of youth unemployment and green growth in the various countries to develop the programme theory through log frame analysis (LFA). Discussions on operational and logistical considerations for implementation informed the writing of a full cost recovery budget, contributing to the development of a project proposal – This will be pitched to a prospective Norwegian corporate partner. Shambhavi, Youth Development Officer at Raleigh Nepal, said:

“This has been one of the most inclusive processes I have been a part of at Raleigh. It has been so important to have national society members a part of the project design process, as the project will ultimately benefit them and their communities. Having the different country teams come together to share ideas and develop something together has helped us create a sustainable project for all our national societies.” 

As Raleigh International begins the process of identifying a Norwegian corporate partner to partake in the youth-led exchange programme, Raleigh’s National Society members are continuing to convene online and share their learnings from the workshop with their peers back home.

If you are a Norwegian corporate interested in collaborating with youth and Raleigh on this programme or are interested more generally in skills based volunteering programmes please contact Head of Corporate Partnerships James Sutton on