The Youth Partnership for Development Sierra Leone (YPPD) is a national non-governmental, advocacy and human rights non-profit making youth-led organization that was established on 12th August (International Youth Day) 2005.
The organization however was borne out of the desire of bringing young people onboard who can serve agitators and agents of change and activists in their respective communities for the promotion of advocacy and youth empowerment in nation building.
It holds a conviction on young people as agents of positivism in terms of national development, thereby strongly believing that as young people that there is the call for for us to come together and build the buoyancy needed in others, as a possible way of enabling youth in stepping forward for positive changes in our various communities and the world at large. With our vision, we develop insight from the daily struggles of our fellow young people who are marginalized and voiceless in the communities they live. This initiative is entirely managed for and by young people in Sierra Leone, which we consider as a novelty in the lives of every young person trying to make a change.
In response to the challenges that children and youth face and in line with the increased attention governments and the international community are giving to children and youth, the YPPD-SL has made a commitment to integrate and deepen its work by first preparing a strategy on children and youth. The strategy focuses that youth and children should not be seen as problems or an issue, but as active agents of their own development in all spheres.
YPPD seeks to provide a ‘youthful voice’ that seeks to address the numerous challenges facing leaders of tomorrow by effectively using young resourceful minds to influence the course of inclusive policy formulation and development in a consistent and harmonized manner.
Within the first year of active service in awareness raising and community mobilization in Freetown and its environs, regional and district focal points were established in the four regions of Sierra Leone, with the formal establishment of the Liberia and Uganda chapter in 2007.
YPPD is thus by and large dedicated to promoting good governance, participatory democratic practices, human rights, gender integrity, economic and social justice in addition to a culture of peace, among others.
We have a vision whereby young people can maximize their participation in development and democracy; shaping the present and future for their communities and societies. Thereby advocating for the rights and dignity of our fellow young people that are marginalized and voiceless.
Our mission is to advocate, inform, involve, inspire and celebrate social change led by and for youth. We connects with organizations and individuals who support young people, and build an alliance between youth groups, empower and develop the marginalized and vulnerable youth of Sierra Leone and Africa at large for them to become responsible future leaders by taking active part in the decision making processes and development programs at all levels to take the golden destinies into their own hands
Also, to educate and inform the youth on global issues; Inspire youth to take action; encourage youth participation in global issues; Identify and build sustainable partnerships aimed at youth development; and provide young people with tools and resources for effective action.
KEY ISSUES OF MAJOR CONCERN TO US.
In acknowledging young people as trusted partners in democracy and development, as well as people with the right to life and health, we respond to the call for our youth-focused programs to address the global agenda on poverty alleviation and HIV/AIDS. In addition to our areas of strategic focus and mandates of our programs, we recognized that there are other important priority areas of youth development other than our core programs. These include disaster management, peace building and conflict resolution and the Millennium development Goals relevant to public health and formal education systems.
OUR STRATEGIC PROGRAMME AREAS
Our mandates demands that we focus on the following four strategic areas:
Youth Enterprise Development
This area of work represents a promising avenue for young people to create their sustainable livelihoods, supported be appropriate programs and supportive policy environment. Sierra Leone Youth Partnership for Development plans to promote sustainable livelihoods among young people as a strategy for poverty reduction and enhancement of living standards through youth enterprise training and research into other innovative projects in collaboration with our partners.
In this drive, we are tremendously trying to bridge the divide between non-disabled and the disabled young people.
Youth Networks and Governance
Our work in this area will give young people an opportunity to promote and provide practical support for the achievement of our fundamental values. The goal of this strategic program is to enhance the capacity of young people and youth networks to influence governance processes at local and national levels in partnerships.
Participation is an essential vehicle for young people’s development, and it contributes to development in wider spheres through building conscious, tolerance and active citizenship. The goal of this strategic program area is to realize the potential of young people as citizens through their participation in, contribution and engagement with national, social, economic, political and cultural development processes.
Youth Work Education and Training
our work in this area recognizes that young people, youth leaders and youth servers all bring experiences and perspectives to the learning environment and, through formal and non-formal training creates opportunities and contribute to build a professional youth service. Through this Program, we plan to promote the profession of youth work, guided by codes of service and regulatory mechanisms.
Vocational Skills Training for Youth is a project conceptualized against the backdrop of engaging the minds and taping into talents of youths in a positive skills ventures, thereby making them self-reliant upon completion of training leading graduation through the provision of stat-up kits provided for them to go into their communities to start their own small enterprises. It aims at restoring hope to an already hopeless situation, and giving a sense of strategic direction to the country’s future and awaiting leaders.
The project aims at setting up a vocational training centre for youths, which will be the hub of activities and initiatives developed for the beneficiation of the target group in their respective communities. This centre, besides, will be accessed used by community-based organizations and other agencies according to their mission and purpose.
The centre will provide the following training ranging among others arts/crafts, tailoring/dress-making and youth development including community newsletters. Basic numeracy and English training will be provided as a way of better equipping trainees with basic measurement and communication skills. The centre will not accommodate but provide services for young people on regular intervals.
The project will have a pilot phase of 12 months during which period implementation starts. It is hoped that the project will be replicated to other areas when the indicators are encouraging as planned for successful implementation.