YouthMap is a multi-country initiative that aims to better understand and address the challenges facing Africa’s young people. Through YouthMap and its Innovation Fund, the International Youth Foundation (IYF) is conducting holistic assessments on youth circumstances and supporting innovative programs and evidence-based approaches to positive youth development in Sub-Saharan Africa. The program brings together public, private, and civil society stakeholders to support and scale activities that promote positive youth development through the three principal components of the initiative:
- Assessment – to identify key challenges and opportunities for youth to become healthy, productive, and engaged citizens
- Learning – to share assessment results with stakeholders and disseminate promising models in positive youth development
- Innovation– to test and scale successful models in education, employability, and entrepreneurship through public-private partnerships.
The program is supported by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and is being implemented by IYF, USAID Missions, and a variety of partners in target countries. YouthMap is a project of Youth:Work, a five-year youth employability program implemented by IYF and funded by USAID through its Office of Urban Programs.
YouthMap produces holistic assessments on the conditions of young people and the status of youth-serving infrastructure in each target country. Each assessment is followed by an in-country learning event that convenes youth and key stakeholders across sectors to discuss assessment findings and opportunities for collaboration and scaling of successful program models. The YouthMap Innovation Fund is providing US$3.5 million to support innovative activities that respond to the assessment findings. The program aims to catalyze cross-sector partnerships at the country and regional levels to replicate promising practices, address gaps in existing programs, and scale up innovations that are working for youth in the areas of education, employability, and entrepreneurship..