Ajenda ya Vijana

The greatest barrier in championing the youth agenda in Tanzania, Africa and all across the globe has been the lack of strong coordinated efforts amongst key youth stakeholders. This coordination has resulted in most youth interventions lacking a sense of ownership and collaborative advocacy. Recognizing that all youth-led initiatives in Tanzania are by the youth and for the youth, 13 you-led NGOs have come together in forming the Tanzania Youth Consortium on Elections (Ajenda ya Vijana).

The formation of Ajenda ya Vijana is inspired by similar efforts from our East African neighbours specifically the Coalition for Kenya Youth Manifesto which prepared the 2017-2021 Kenya Youth Manifesto with a collaboration of over 62 youth organizations and networks and the Youth Coalition for Electoral Democracy in Uganda (YCED) that prepared the Uganda Youth manifesto 2016-2021.

The effort to create a collaboration among youth-led CSOs initially begun with a plan to form a coalition for preparing the Tanzania youth Manifesto 2020-2025 as it has been in other East African countries. However, the founding organization soon realized that there will be a lot of missed opportunities for impactful collaboration in other youth-led initiatives, and thus formed a consortium instead.

The formation of the consortium was preceded with the founding members examining the main reasons why Tanzanian Youth-led CSOs have a loose network thus making it very difficult to champion the youth agenda. For inspiration and strategy reference was made to learn how more than 500 CSOs were able to come together and coordinate a successful program during the National Voluntary Review (NVR)  for Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Upon conducting a retrospective it was plainly obvious that what youth-led CSOs especially steer from collaborative initiatives because of seeking individual recognition so as to secure funds from donors or monopoly for individual recognition. However, it is well known that donors prefer and specifically ask for nationwide coordination in these initiatives, and most of all, the Tanzania Youth Manifesto is for you and must be by the youth, hence it was established one can not champion it separately or alone, and therefore it has to be inclusive and engaging in every level.

Ajenda ya Vijana’s foremost objectives include ensuring a sense of collaborative ownership of the 2020-2025 Tanzania Youth Manifesto and youth election observation amongst the members of the consortium and the Tanzanian youth themselves. Also to avoid duplicating processes that other initiatives have already begun or finished by scaling them and strengthening them.

The consortium is the beginning of a large scale lobbying campaign for changes in the youth policy and development frameworks which includes the creation of means of monitoring the accountability of elected leaders, building the capacity of youth running for office, youth participation  in regional decision making bodies and youth elected in office and building platforms for national youth dialogues and foundations for inter-generational innovative solutions.

 



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