Afrika Youth Movement
Strengthen the impact of local youth-led campaigns by creating forums for decentralised movements to connect their work to regional and international political outcomes.
Building Africa’s Largest Youth-Led Movement
Africa has the highest proportion of young people in the world - with over 60% of the population under 25 years old. Young people across Africa share many common struggles, such as high youth unemployment, marginalization and in many cases, living under repressive political regimes. The generational gap in leadership on the continent is massive and requires youth political participation and engagement in their country’s development, where they are often excluded.
Afrika Youth Movement (AYM) is a pan-African, decentralized youth-led movement that strives for the participation, development, and leadership of African youth to achieve their rights to peace, equality and social justice. Started by Tunisian and pan-African activist, Aya Chebbi, as a Facebook group in 2012, and launched in 2015, AYM is becoming one of Africa’s most influential youth movements with more than 10 000 members from 40 countries. This is a community of young activists, scholars, citizens and survivors providing a strong political collective youth voice in Africa's youth and development debate and a bridge between North-South of the Sahara and Africa-Diaspora youth.
AYM created a groundbreaking new model of youth forums on the continent called “AYM Youth Empowerment Forum” from Global Agenda to Africa’s Agenda. The Inaugural Forum, which was held on 20 March 2017 in Nairobi, Kenya, brought together 84 young changemakers of grassroots initiatives from 19 countries to lead and enagage with the Global Goals and Agenda2063. The second forum was held on 22 April 2018 in Accra, Ghana.
The forum model was replicated into national forums; in Lagos engaging religious leaders, and Kampala engaging embassies and the private sector. The forums have also resulted in structured, gender-balanced, committed country-focused teams across the continent called “AYM Youth Hubs”. Four decentralised hubs in Uganda, Ghana, Democratic Republic of the Congo and Nigeria are already established and another 20 hubs across Africa are launching; where its members are building youth alliances, amplifying the voices of young people in vulnerable and disempowering contexts, changing narratives, and working on advocacy for youth leadership in decision-making at national as well as international spaces including the United Nations, African Union and other multilateral organisations where AYM is frequently organizing and speaking for African youth agenda.
AYM is a non-registered movement and operates for the last three years with no central bank account and a small volunteer “Power Team” of six activists from Africa and the Diaspora. Its funding model is based on maximising strategic partnerships, members’ mobilisation through their organisations, and community fundraising. The forums are fully funded by its members with no external funding. AYM spaces have been transformative, inclusive, impactful and life-changing for its members.
AYM organises its members also in five committees, namely Agriculture, Health, Education, Gender, and Peace and Security. These committees facilitate online forums, run advocacy campaigns, and produce strategies and papers to affect policies. Each committee develops its strategy independently, presents its policy papers and recommendations in conferences and consultations. Examples in this regard include AYM committees on Health and Gender which are championing the Menstrual Hygiene Day every year (28 May) and organised #PeriodNotShame local actions to increase awareness about menstrual hygiene. In Mautu Community in Cameroon, AYM distributed sanitary pads to 654 girls, and in the Bongo district in Upper East Region in Ghana, it distributed sanitary pads and sensitised 272 girls of Nyaruga D/A Junior School. AYM also uses music and art to mobilise youth and produced a song “Afia Mama” for this campaign.
AYM run also a number of other campaigns such as #ILoveMyContinent #AfricaSmile and #TrueAfrika aiming to change the narrative about Africa and African youth.