Up to Youth Activity

Up to Youth aims to empower youth for positive changes in their respective communities and helps build youth resilience to risky behaviors.
Up to Youth aims to empower youth for positive changes in their respective communities and helps build youth resilience to risky behaviors.
Global Communities for USAID

This five-year activity addresses youth vulnerable to social exclusion by mobilizing and engaging youth in meaningful ways to effect positive change in nine municipalities of Kosovo (Hani i Elezit/Elez Han, Kaçanik/Kačanik, Viti/Vitina, Mitrovicë Jugore/Južna Mitrovica, Vushtrri/Vučitrn, Skënderaj/Srbica, Istog/k, Klinë/a, and Gjakovë/Đakovica).  This will be achieved through the activity’s three interconnected objectives:

Youth Mobilization

USAID through Up to Youth mobilizes youth to be a force for positive change by focusing on identifying, recognizing, and bringing together vulnerable youth who have the potential and will for positive change.  Youth are effective change-makers when they can recognize, seek to work with, and improve the structures that prevent them from being forces for positive change.  Interventions will vary according to the specific needs of each partner municipality.

Building Skills for the Youth

Up to Youth develops and demonstrates life and soft skills among youth by preparing youth with the necessary skills to engage in meaningful ways and play active roles in their municipal and/or national economy.  Skill-building in relevant life and soft skills and economic development prepares youth to participate in municipal and/or national decision-making and the economy.  Life and soft skills can be identified as:  critical thinking, social media literacy, issue advocacy, problem-solving, decision-making, leadership, self-motivation, active listening, self-control, positive self-concept, empathy, negotiation, and tolerance.  Economic life skills include, but are not limited to, entrepreneurship, financial literacy, accessing financing, and accessing mentorship.  Interventions include self-employment and entrepreneurship programs, grant-making programs, incentive funds, development of new sectors, the facilitation of public and private alliances, and the establishment of linkages for private-sector funding such as angel investors or venture capital firms.

Enabling Environment for Youth

Up to Youth develops, builds, and supports resilient partners in fostering an environment for youth to engage in positive and meaningful ways.  This objective focuses on identifying formal /informal actors who can serve as resilience partners, developing existing resilience networks, and building new networks.  Interventions support formal/informal actors and networks so they can foster an environment in which youth can contribute in meaningful ways.  Resilience actors include peers, parents, teachers, health officials, school officials, community leaders, local officials, business leaders, religious leaders, Municipal Community Safety Councils, and universities.  Interventions include, but are not limited to, developing platforms or processes for effective youth participation and community consultation; supporting structured dialogue on developing employment and income-generating opportunities for youth; and people-to-people dialogue.

Positive Youth Development Approach

Up to Youth uses the Positive Youth Development (PYD) approach, which embeds four key domains throughout the activity’s three objectives:  assets, agency, contribution, and enabling environment.  Positive Youth Development engages youth together with their families, communities, and/or governments so youth are empowered to reach their full potential.  The PYD approach builds skills, assets, and competencies; fosters healthy relationships; strengthens the environment; and transforms systems.

Expected Results

  • An increased sense of responsibility amongst youth;
  • Motivated and mobilized youth who can make positive changes in their communities;
  • Youth involved in their communities in meaningful ways;
  • Stronger youth partners who enable a better environment for youth;
  • Engaged youth who play more active roles in their municipal and/or national economy; and
  • Demonstrated leadership amongst youth and their engagement in Kosovo’s democratic processes.

Project Duration:            April 2019 – April 2024                                                          

Partner:                               Global Communities

Contact Information:    Merita Teliqi


Last updated: February 11, 2020

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