List Of Youth Empowerment Programs In Nigeria

List Of Youth Empowerment Programs In Nigeria

Youth Empowerment Programs In Nigeria Youth Empowerment Programs

Posted on 15 July 2024

Nigeria, a nation brimming with youthful energy, faces a significant challenge: harnessing the potential of its burgeoning youth population. With over 60% of Nigerians under the age of 25, youth empowerment is not just a buzzword—it's a critical necessity for the country's social and economic progress.

Nigerian youth encounter many obstacles, from soaring unemployment rates and limited access to quality education to a lack of essential skills and opportunities. If left unaddressed, these challenges can hinder individual growth and stunt the nation's overall development.

Yet, amid these challenges, a wave of hope is rising through youth empowerment programs. These initiatives, spanning diverse sectors and led by government agencies, private organisations, and NGOs, are designed to equip young Nigerians with the tools they need to thrive. From skills training and entrepreneurship support to mentorship and leadership development, these programs transform lives and shape Nigeria's brighter future.

In this comprehensive guide, we'll explore a list of youth empowerment programs in Nigeria, highlighting their unique approaches, eligibility criteria, and the transformative benefits they offer. 

Impactful Youth Empowerment Programs In Nigeria

Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs):

  1. Young Executive Program by the Bet9ja Foundation

  2. Youth Empowerment Foundation (YEF)

  3. Action Health Incorporated

  4. Rise Networks

  5. BudgIT Tracka

  6. Connected Development (CODE)

  7. Teach for Nigeria

  8. Junior Achievement Nigeria

  9. Street Project Foundation

  10. The Incubator Africa

Government Initiatives:

  1. Nigeria Jubilee Fellows Programme (NJFP)

  2. Youth Empowerment and Development Initiative (YEDI)

  3. N-Power

  4. Graduate Internship Scheme (GIS)

  5. Youth Initiative for Sustainable Agriculture (YISA)

  6. Youth Enterprise With Innovation In Nigeria (YouWiN!)

  7. African Youth Growth Foundation (AYGF)

  8. National Youth Service Corps (NYSC)

Private Sector Programs:

  1. Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Programme

  2. Bank of Industry (BOI) Youth Entrepreneurship Support (YES) Program

  3. Access Bank Womenpreneur Pitch-a-ton Africa

  4. FATE Foundation Aspiring Entrepreneurs Programme

  5. LEAP Africa Youth Leadership Program

  6. The Future Project Young Leaders Programme

International Organizations:

  1. MasterCard Foundation Scholars Program

  2. Ashoka Young Changemakers

  3. Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI)

  4. United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Youth Empowerment Programs

  5. International Youth Foundation (IYF) YouthActionNet

Other Initiatives:

  1. Lagos State Employment Trust Fund (LSETF)

  2. Edo State Skills Development Agency (EdoJobs)

  3. Outsource Global Skill Acquisition Program

  4. Andela Fellowship

This is a dynamic list, and new programs are constantly being launched. For the most up-to-date information, it's advisable to check the websites of the organizations mentioned and relevant government agencies.

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NGO-Led Youth Empowerment Programs

Non-governmental organisations (NGOs) play a crucial role in Nigeria's youth empowerment landscape. They often reach marginalised communities and individuals who may not have access to government or private sector programs. These organisations work tirelessly at the grassroots level, addressing specific needs and empowering young people to create positive change in their lives and communities.

Let's explore two impactful NGO-led initiatives:

1. Young Executive Program by the Bet9ja Foundation:

The Bet9ja Foundation Young Executive Program (YEP) is a 3-month initiative to empower recent Nigerian graduates to thrive in today's competitive job market and explore entrepreneurial opportunities.

Program Focus:

  • Employability: Participants develop essential workplace skills like communication, problem-solving, and adaptability through a 2-day masterclass. This includes a career clinic with free CV review and assessment.

  • Entrepreneurship: Another two-day masterclass equips participants with the knowledge and tools needed to cultivate an entrepreneurial mindset. Topics covered include business planning and market analysis. Selected graduates receive a Business Startup Box to help them get started.

  • Mentorship: Participants are paired with experienced professionals for virtual mentorship sessions, gaining valuable guidance and industry insights.

  • Internship: Selected participants can apply their skills in real-world settings through internships with partner companies, gaining practical experience and networking opportunities.

  • Business Startup Grant: Selected graduates receive a N500,000 grant package to launch their businesses, 3 months of free business advisory support, a website, a financial software subscription, and business registration.


  • Nigerian graduates aged 21-30 (or 21-35 for people with disabilities) who graduated within the last 2 years.

  • Fluent in English (verbal and written).

  • Able to travel for training and placement.

Program Benefits:

  • Enhanced employability skills, making participants more competitive job candidates.

  • Entrepreneurial mindset and skills for those interested in starting businesses.

  • Valuable mentorship and guidance from experienced professionals.

  • Practical experience and networking opportunities through internships.

  • Financial support and resources for starting and growing businesses.

Overall, the Bet9ja Foundation Young Executive Program is a unique opportunity for recent graduates in Nigeria to gain the skills, knowledge, and support they need to succeed in their chosen career paths, whether that's in traditional employment or entrepreneurship.

2. Youth Empowerment Foundation (YEF):

About: YEF is a non-profit organisation dedicated to improving the lives of young Nigerians through education, health, and livelihood programs. They focus on vulnerable populations, including girls, out-of-school youth, and those living with disabilities.

Unique Approach: YEF employs a holistic approach that combines skills training, mentorship, psychosocial support, and advocacy to address the multifaceted challenges young people face.

Target Demographics: YEF primarily focuses on marginalised youth, including girls, out-of-school youth, and those with disabilities.

Impact Stories: YEF has empowered thousands of young people across Nigeria, providing them the skills and resources to secure livelihoods, improve their health, and become active community contributors.

These NGOs, along with many others across Nigeria, are making a tangible difference in the lives of young people. By providing targeted support, training, and opportunities, they are nurturing a generation of empowered individuals equipped to overcome challenges, realise their potential, and contribute to a brighter future for Nigeria.

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Government-Led Youth Empowerment Programs

The Nigerian government recognises that investing in its youth is an investment in the nation's future. Through various initiatives and programs, it aims to address young people's unique challenges and provide them with the necessary tools and opportunities to thrive. Here are some of the key government-led youth empowerment programs making a significant impact:

1. Nigeria Jubilee Fellows Programme (NJFP):

About: This one-year fellowship program connects talented young Nigerian graduates with local job opportunities while equipping them with world-class skills and knowledge.

Benefits: Gain practical experience, mentorship, and professional development in diverse sectors.

Eligibility: Nigerian graduates aged 18-35 with NYSC certificates.

2. N-Power:

About: A comprehensive initiative to address youth unemployment by providing paid volunteer opportunities and skills training in various sectors like education, health, and agriculture.

Benefits: Skill acquisition, monthly stipend, and potential pathways to permanent employment.

Eligibility: Unemployed Nigerian youths aged 18-35.

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3. Youth Enterprise With Innovation In Nigeria (YouWiN!):

About: Aimed to foster young Nigerians' entrepreneurship by providing grants and business development support.

Benefits: Financial support, business training, mentorship, and market access.

Eligibility: Nigerian entrepreneurs aged 18-45 with innovative business ideas.

These are just a few of the many government-led initiatives empowering young Nigerians. By participating in these programs, young people can gain valuable skills, access mentorship and financial support, and ultimately contribute to the nation's economic growth and social development.

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Private Sector-Led Youth Empowerment Programs

Recognising the immense potential of Nigeria's youth, the private sector has stepped up to play a crucial role in their empowerment. Companies are investing in young talent for their workforce and launching innovative programs that nurture the entrepreneurial spirit, provide access to capital, and create a ripple effect of positive change across communities.

Let's delve into some of the most impactful private sector-led youth empowerment programs in Nigeria:

1. Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Programme:

About: This flagship program is a beacon of hope for aspiring African entrepreneurs. It provides a comprehensive support package, including seed capital, business training, mentorship, and access to a vast network of like-minded individuals.

Application Process: An annual online application window is open for entrepreneurs across Africa with scalable business ideas.

Funding Opportunities: Selected entrepreneurs receive $5,000 in non-refundable seed capital.

Success Stories: The program has empowered thousands of entrepreneurs, creating jobs, generating revenue, and contributing to sustainable development across the continent.

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2. Bank of Industry (BOI) Youth Entrepreneurship Support (YES) Program:

About: This initiative is specifically designed to support young entrepreneurs in Nigeria by providing access to finance and business advisory services.

Application Process: Interested entrepreneurs can apply through the BOI website or designated channels.

Funding Opportunities: The program offers loans and other financial instruments tailored to the needs of young businesses.

Success Stories: The YES program has helped numerous young entrepreneurs launch and grow their businesses, creating employment opportunities and stimulating economic activity.

3. Access Bank Womenpreneur Pitch-a-ton Africa:

About: While not exclusively for youth, this program is a game-changer for aspiring female entrepreneurs, offering training, mentorship, and grant funding.

Application Process: Women-led businesses submit their business plans and pitch their ideas to a panel of judges.

Funding Opportunities: Winners receive financial grants to support their businesses.

Success Stories: The program has empowered women entrepreneurs across Africa, enabling them to realise their business dreams and significantly impact their communities.

These are just a few examples of the many private-sector initiatives empowering young Nigerians. By fostering entrepreneurship, providing financial support, and creating platforms for skill development, these programs are shaping a new generation of leaders, innovators, and changemakers who are driving Nigeria's progress.

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International Organizations Empowering Nigerian Youth

Recognising the immense potential and challenges facing Nigerian youth, various international organisations have stepped forward to play a crucial role in their empowerment. These organisations bring global expertise, resources, and networks, collaborating with local stakeholders to create impactful programs that drive positive change.

Here's a look at some key international players in the Nigerian youth empowerment landscape:

1. MasterCard Foundation Scholars Program:

About: This prestigious scholarship program provides access to quality education and leadership development opportunities for academically talented young people from disadvantaged backgrounds.

Focus Areas: Education, leadership development, mentorship, and career support.

Impact: The program has empowered thousands of young people across Africa, enabling them to pursue their dreams and contribute to their communities.

2. Ashoka Young Changemakers:

About: Ashoka identifies and supports young people leading social change initiatives in their communities.

Focus Areas: Social entrepreneurship, innovation, and leadership.

Impact: Ashoka Young Changemakers drive solutions to pressing social issues, from education and healthcare to environmental sustainability.

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3. Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI):

About: This U.S. government-funded initiative aims to invest in the next generation of African leaders through various programs, including the Mandela Washington Fellowship and the YALI Regional Leadership Centers.

Focus Areas: Leadership development, entrepreneurship, civic engagement, and public management.

Impact: YALI has empowered thousands of young African leaders, equipping them with the skills and networks to drive positive change in their communities and countries.

These are just a few examples of how international organisations are making a significant contribution to youth empowerment in Nigeria. By providing access to education, mentorship, funding, and networks, they are helping to create a more prosperous and equitable future for the country's young people.

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Frequently Asked Questions About List Of Youth Empowerment Programs In Nigeria:

  1. Who is eligible for youth empowerment programs in Nigeria? Eligibility varies depending on the program. Some are open to all young Nigerians, while others target specific demographics, such as women, graduates, or those from disadvantaged backgrounds.

  2. How can I apply for these programs? Application processes vary, but most programs have online application forms or require you to submit proposals. Be sure to check the specific requirements for each program.

  3. Are these programs free? Some programs are fully funded, while others may require a partial contribution from participants.

  4. What kind of support can I expect from these programs? Support can include financial assistance (grants, loans), skills training, mentorship, networking opportunities, and job placement assistance.

  5. How can I find out about new youth empowerment programs? Follow relevant organisations and government agencies on social media, subscribe to their newsletters, and check their websites regularly for announcements.

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