YOUTH CIVIC ENGAGEMENT, YCE
Let’s note that:  Children are the persons who are going to carry on what we have started. They are going to sit where we are sitting, and when we are gone, attend to those things which we think are important. We may adopt all the policies we please, but how they are carried out depends on them. They will assume control of our villages, towns and regions. They are going to take over our churches, schools, universities and corporations. The fate of humanity is in their hands’’

The youth civic engagement, yce program headed by the youth program manager and supported by the youth fund is helping train a generation of;

  • leaders who will always guide the foundation in meeting its objectives.
  • donors who will always support the foundation in fostering social change in Masindi.
  • mentors of the local citizens in managing their social enterprises.

Through the program, different group of 20 young people are recruited from Masindi schools and tertiary institutions every after 2 years. The group of young people is called the Youth Advisory Council, YAC.

The YAC is a permanent council of the foundation and the students/members on the council range between the ages of 15-25 years. YAC members provide recommendations and guidance around issues affecting young people and those important to them and the community.

The first year on the council is a learning experience. Here, YAC members are trained in the areas of; community leadership, philanthropy, operation of community foundations, needs assessment, fundraising/fund development, grantmaking and community service.

YAC members then spend the 2nd year doing practical activities under these areas.

Pathways for Youth Civic Engagement

Needs assessment:

YAC members take time to understand youth issues in the community identify potential resources and advance possible solutions.

Grantmaking:

YAC members use Requests for Proposals, RFPs to request for grant applications dealing with the priorities in needs assessment

Fundraising/Fund development:

YAC members host public conferences to highlight RFPs. Fundraising letters are delivered to everyone in attendance to support the Youth Fund, which in turn fund projects that benefit the youth in the region.

YAC members attend the annual interprimary and intersecondary district school athletics competition and reward each top performer in the different categories like Javelin, 100 meters among others. Fundraising letters are delivered to everyone in attendance to support the Youth Fund to fund such competitions.

YAC members attend the annual district intersecondary school football competitions and reward each top performer in the different categories like best goalkeeper, top scorer among others. Fundraising letters are delivered to everyone in attendance to support the Youth Fund to fund such competitions.

Community service:

To actively involve the youth into community services, one of the conditions for approving grants under the foundation’s Youth Fund is; ‘’Projects seeking funding, apart from benefiting the youth, MUST also actively involve them in preparation of grant applications and implementation as volunteers’’. 

Also our YAC members are involved into community services through the annual community service project/initiative, ‘’A Vibrant Community is an HIV/AIDS Free Community’’.

Under this community service initiative, YAC members organize termly school holiday subcounties HIV/AIDS prevention campaigns. The campaigns focus primarily on the youth in different subcounties on termly holidays. The campaign is based on the fact that young people have ideas and solutions to propose and if they are given the chance to be heard and to work, their contribution can be extremely significant. Furthermore, young people are much more effective than adults in communicating prevention messages to other young people because they share similar experiences, use similar language, and their interactions are often more authentic than those of adults.

The justification for the campaign is that the young generation is under great threat of the HIV/AIDS scourge, given the nature of adolescent sexuality in the district.

Since MCF looks at the youth also as future community assets which the community shall always look to as resources as they work towards transforming Masindi into a better place to live, there was need to design HIV/AIDS education and sensitization campaign to target the young generation.

NOTE: Since the results of the youth needs assessment survey guide our grantmaking strategy, we don’t receive unsolicited proposals under this program. Check our website frequently for the Call for Proposals or subscribe to our monthly newsletter here.