Youth Resilience Activity (YRA)

Disengaged child soldiers, former youth offenders, youth in vulnerable socio-economic conditions, migrant youth and youth in migrant receptor communities, youth vulnerable to recruitment and utilization, and youth survivors and/or at risk of intrafamily violence or gender-based violence (GBV) face a range of systemic challenges.

These challenges include intrafamily violence; weak relationships with parents and caring adults; patriarchal or toxic masculinity norms; attraction to illegal activities; sex trafficking, predominantly of young women and girls; bullying; self-harm; substance abuse; normalization of community violence; and significant social stigma within return communities for former youth offenders, disengaged child soldiers, and migrants.

These systemic challenges require our inclusive systems approach to ensure that youth are equipped with assets, empowered to exercise agency, and protected by and contributing to positive enabling environments that mitigate violence and crime risks and build youth resiliency.

  • Objective 1: Healthy relationships and networks established
  • Objective 2: Youth-centric protective environments created
  • Objective 3: Youth economic empowerment enhanced
  • Cross-cutting Objective: Strategic communications for social cohesion enhanced

Using a socio-ecological perspective, YRA’s approach starts with the youth themselves and targets multiple social and environmental layers impacting youth’s positive development. These layers include:

  • Families, communities, schools, civil society organizations (CSOs), faith-based organization (FBOs), private sector, and public institutions.
  • The approach’s embedded conflict-sensitive focus operationalizes Do No Harm (DNH) and protection principles and prioritizes trauma-informed risk identification and mitigation strategies.

Objective 1: Healthy Relationships and Networks Established

  • Youth psychosocial and life skills improved
  • Parenting skills and family cohesion strengthened

Objective 2: Youth-centric protective environments created

  • Youth engagement in community dynamics improved
  • Youth’s access and engagement in safe public spaces improved
  • Efficacy of youth-centered and family support services increased

Objective 3: Youth economic empowerment enhanced

  • Market-driven and youth-centered workforce development strengthened
  • Youth access to inclusive, sustainable and market-driven economic opportunities increased

Funder: USAID

Project Specialist: Nick Okerlund,

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