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YouthConnekt Africa Summit 2021 is in the corner, Accra- Ghana 20-22 October

Accelerating Africa's Integration through Youth Participation

Message from our Executive Director

Welcome to our second 2021 YouthConnekt Africa Hub Newsletter!
As Africa continues to battle the COVID19 impact on health and economies, our continent's recovery relies on concerted efforts across sectors and the participation of all key stakeholders including the youth.
On January 1st 2021, Africa realized a long-awaited dream - that of concrete integration through open trade via the Africa Continental Free Trade Agreement. With this framework, Africa reintroduces itself as a 1.2 Billion Marketplace worth over USD 2.1 Trillion in GDP.  The AfCFTA promises to increase regional value chain development, industrialization, creation of new forms of employment. The AfCTA will be inclusive of both formal and informal traders, ensuring better protection through formal trading across borders. Young people are significant contributors to this marketplace. While most often operating at a small scale, youth-owned enterprises across the continent present the potential for growth across markets.

The YouthConnekt Africa Hub is excited to join partners in creating new opportunities for Africa's driven, creative and entrepreneurial youth through an export accelerator that is inspired by the AfCFTA, the founding theme of the upcoming 2021 YouthConnekt Africa Summit that will take place in October in Accra, Ghana.  

Learn more about these opportunities and other activities, past and upcoming at the YouthConnekt Africa Hub. 

Oulie Keita.


YouthConnekt Africa Export Accelerator
Application Deadline: 31st August 2021

The African Free Trade Area Agreement is a groundbreaking policy framework that brings together 54 African countries merging them into a single market of 1.3 Billion people and is expected to create am economic bloc with a combined GDP of USD 3.4 Trillion.

To accelerate the participation of youth-owned entreprises in this new marketplace, the YouthConnekt Africa Hub, along with its network of partners, will be selecting its pilot cohort of export ready entreprises to benefit from a range of services including access to growth financing, access to new markets and  accelerated growth and strengthening of company operations, production efficiency and go to market strategies.

Stay tuned for the soon to be launched call for applications on our YouthConnekt Africa website.

Upcoming YouthConnekt Africa Hub Programs

1. YouthConnekt Clusters Challenge YCA launches yet another exciting program to create continental flagships to accelerate youth empowerment efforts. The very objective of this challenge is to amplify the work of national YouthConnekt programs by creating impactful continental flagships to empower young people. This program provides an opportunity to design intervention based on the strengths of the national YC program, current youth development priorities, or scaling up of an initiative.  A seed grant of (USD 5000 to 6000) will be given to selected member countries to pilot any intervention under the selected cluster.

2. YouthConnekt Africa Summit
YCA SummitThe YouthConnekt Africa Summit is an annual convening that connects youth from across the continent and beyond with policy influencers, political leaders, and public, private and development sector institutions to engage, discuss, design, and accelerate youth empowerment efforts at a continental level. This year’s summit will focus on “Positioning African Youth to cater for the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) Market.


3. YouthConnekt Africa Country Analysis
The YouthConnekt Africa Hub as a regional ecosystem partner that supports Governments and national ecosystems, is mandated to support in an advisory capacity with the modelling and adaptation of policies that meet the changing demands and contexts of nations. By working with national chapters, the YouthConnekt will develop knowledge from emerging best practices and successful programs that have demonstrated scaleble solutions to the issues pertaining youth socio-economic transformation in Africa. This exercise spanning the 22 national chapters will identify opportunities and gaps in the implementation of national youth policies and serve as a basis of policy and programmatic recommendations and support.

4. Regional iAccelerator
In partnership with the Regional UNFPA Africa office, the YouthConnekt Africa Hub will curate and disseminate educational content on youth sexual and reproductive health and mental health to help address existing and emerging challenges of youth access to information and services on the themes. The Hub will also identify key policy and programmatic thematic around youth health to discuss with national ecosystems within the platform of the YouthConnekt Africa Summit.

YouthConnekt Africa Hub Updates 

Ethiopia Partners Engagement - June 2021

This past June, our Executive Director was in Addis Ababa for high-level meetings with the AU Deputy Chair and the Youth Department as well as the UNDP Regional Service Centre.

Visit to African Union Commission
In light of youth development and achieving the #1mby2021, the Executive Director met with H.E Dr. Monique Nsanzabaganwa, AU Commission Deputy Chair Person, to build on an effective AU Youth and YCA Hub relationship and collaborate on increasing regional engagement through the 2018 Partner framework. The Executive Director also met with the Director of AU Youth department to strengthen collaboration in the creation of  decent opportunities for young people in Africa.   

UNDP Regional Service Centre for Africa (UNDP RSCA)
During her visit, the YCA Hub Executive Director also met with the team at UNDP RSCA to join forces and harmonize on the recent agreement to work more closely with the organization as a key partner with the RSCA team. She commended the Regional Service Center on aligning the role of the YouthConnekt Africa Hub as a central partner in scaling up and sustaining the YCA model across Africa. YCA Hub with the UNDP RSCA agreed on delivering a joint workplan to support the socio-transformation of Youth on the African continent.

Courtesy Call with H.E. Ambassador of Rwanda and YouthConnekt Ethiopia
The Ambassador of Rwanda to Ethiopia and Djibouti, and Rwanda's Permanent Representative to the AU, H.E. Hope Gasatura graciously received the YCA Hub Executive Director in a courtesy visit. The Executive Director also met with the team leads of YouthConnekt Ethiopia.

Reconnecting with YouthConnekt Senegal, and Launch of YouthConnekt Mauritania
In the second quarter, we welcomed one new member - the Islamic Republic of Mauritania. It is a resounding achievement that shows confidence of the members states in the YouthConnekt model to address youth empowerment issues. With inclusion of this new Sahelian states, the YCA is present in seven out of ten Sahelian states. Additionally, the YouthConnekt Africa team traveled to Dakar, Senegal within the framework of expanding YouthConnekt in the Sahel region. The YCA Team had an opportunity to meet with the Secretary-General of the Ministry of Youth of Senegal to discuss the importance of making YouthConnekt Senegal a dynamic network.

YouthConnekt Mauritania

YouthConnekt Mauritania plans to engage in the following programs:
Component 1: YouthConnekt Mentorship - Mentoring is an important concept of the national volunteering program known as WATANOUNA and the PNVM project implemented with the UNDP. 
Component 2: YouthConnekt Dialogue - Provide young people with the necessary space to express themselves but also to exchange with others socio-economic components for an optimal contribution to the development of the country.
Component 3: YouthConnekt Hangouts - in connection with the culture of dialogue. and to provide a space for expression, a system of regular virtual meetings will be set up to facilitate inter-young exchange with both those in the territory and the diaspora.        



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