EDC’s USAID Huguka Dukore Akazi Kanoze (HDAK) project created a national event to highlight youth leadership in Rwanda. The National Youth Summit, led and facilitated entirely by youth that participated in HDAK, will inspire the next generation of the country’s young leaders to seek a brighter, more prosperous future.
The National Youth Summit showcases the ways in which empowered youth drive their employment path forward and honors partnerships with local and central governments, private sectors, civil society organizations, and other partners. It celebrates leadership programs that empower youth to serve as role models, facilitate peer-to-peer accompaniment and employment support, and lead civic engagement activities in their communities.
The summit showcases HDAK’s peer-to-peer facilitation model, which provides group support to thousands of youth to help them achieve their employment and personal development goals. When I was in Rwanda, I had the opportunity to see the evolution of this critical component, and I witnessed the streamlining of HDAK’s leadership training component across the 25 districts where HDAK operates. I also had the good fortune to be present for the first National Youth Summit in Kigali in 2018.
This year, the summit has been expanded to include three regional summits in the districts of Kayonza, Nyansa, and Rubayu, leading to a culminating event in the capital city of Kigali. The first regional summit was held on October 15, and two additional regional summits are being held on October 18 and 23. The national summit will be held on November 15. Learn more about the National Youth Summit.
Ricardo Perez-Pineda is an international project coordinator at EDC, and former intern on the USAID Huguka Dukore Akazi Kanoze youth development project.