Acting with youth
Africa has the youngest population in the world with more than 400 million young people between the ages of 15 and 35. This emerging human capital should be seen as a resource, not a problem. This is why Brazzaville Foundation wishes to integrate the issue of strengthening human capital in all the initiatives it supports, and to open a forum for African youth solutions.
Strengthening human capital
According to a report by the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa, the demographic composition of the continent is predominantly young, with those under 35 representing nearly 60% of the population. A resource and lever for development, they face various obstacles: insufficient skills and a low rate of integration into the professional world; problems of valorisation and promotion of their qualifications; discriminatory behaviors linked to certain cultural practices that take precedence over skills in recruitment.
The private sector has difficulty attracting and identifying young specialised graduates because of their attraction to administrative careers. In addition, African countries suffer from the brain drain phenomenon where young talents leave to study and work abroad, making them unavailable to national administrations and African companies.
In 2021 and 2022, with the support of the IDeA Foundation, the Brazzaville Foundation has designed the programme "Young African Talents" to identify, promote and enhance the value of young Africans and improve their employability, particularly through professional training courses. This programme also allows to reinforce the human capital necessary for the realisation initiatives supported by the Foundation.
Opening a forum for African youth solutions
The African Union has developed several policies and programmes for youth development at the continental level. These policies include the African Youth Charter, the Youth Decade Plan of Action, and the Malabo Decision on Youth Empowerment, all of which are being implemented under the various programmes of Agenda 2063.
During the adoption of the African Youth Charter in 2006 in Banjul, November 1st was proclaimed and instituted as "African Youth Day". It allows, each year, to promote the recognition of youth as key actors for social change, economic growth and sustainable development in all areas of African society.
It is within this institutional framework that Brazzaville Foundation wishes to open a space for debate to youth representatives from the member countries of the African Union to discuss issues affecting their daily lives and their future, and to propose recommendations to enrich existing policies.
In the climate field, a first exchange took place during the COP27 in Sharm el-Sheikh on November 17, 2022.
Caption: Moderated by Raoul Siemeni, Chief Executive of Afrique Environnement, the debate allowed for a lively and very instructive exchange, concluding on the need to prepare now for COP28 ©Brazzaville Foundation.