n Commonwealth Youth and Development - Mainstreaming the youth in Africa's development : the role of NEPAD




There have never been as many young Africans as there are now. The roughly 800 million young people in Africa have an untapped potential, but they are also facing significant challenges. The New Partnership for Africa's Development (NEPAD) acknowledges that young women and men in Africa are resourceful and valuable assets for Africa's development. Young people are not a sectoral concern; neither are they tailed at the end of programmes of regional revival and socio-economic integration. Instead, young people are integral to the process of development across all sectors and fields of interest. It is for these reasons that this article explores the possibilities of using the Strategic Framework for the NEPAD Youth Programme as a coordinated continental approach to creating an environment that is conducive to mainstreaming the young people's interests and active participation in Africa's development. The article does not only explore a number of challenges that young people are faced with in Africa, but also suggests the need for a speedy implementation of the NEPAD Youth Programme, along with mechanisms for including young Africans in NEPAD's decision-making processes. Its added value to the NEPAD initiative lays emphasis on the significance of involving young people in the socio-economic development and advancement of Africa and to mainstream youth issues into NEPAD's work projects and programmes implementation.


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