Youth Actively Create Opportunities Activity
The Republic of North Macedonia is undergoing fundamental socioeconomic changes that are opening doors for long-term economic development. In such a context, the need for youth-driven initiatives that facilitate youth integration into high-growth economic sectors is key. The five-year USAID Youth Actively Create Opportunities Activity implemented by Improving Economies for Stronger Communities (IESC) seeks to seize this window of opportunity and strengthen the Macedonian workforce development system and contribute to youth-led development.
Stories of Impact
- Empowering Aspiring Chefs to Thrive in North Macedonia’s Culinary Industry
- Equipping Macedonian Youth with Digital Skills
- Green Solutions Hackathon Inspires 15 Innovative Eco-Friendly Projects
- IESC Officially Launches Youth-Focused Initiative in North Macedonia
- Climathon Skopje: Catalyzing Youth-Led Climate Innovation
The overall goal of the USAID Youth Actively Create Opportunities Activity is to increase positive youth contributions to society and collective youth leadership across North Macedonia. To achieve this, IESC and Macedonian partners Center for Entrepreneurship and Executive Development (CEED) Hub Skopje and Youth Educational Forum (YEF) prioritize a youth-centered local systems approach to jointly implement activities under the Activity’s three Components:
Component 1: Partnerships created to support economic opportunities attractive to youth.
The Activity creates and facilitates youth engagement opportunities with the private sector, collaborates with local authorities to strengthen youth programming, creates employment avenues for trained youth, supports green jobs, and bolsters youth entrepreneurship and social engagement.
Component 2: Youth competencies for jobs, progressive carriers, and civic life strengthened.
The Activity supports youth access to specialized, innovative, and entrepreneurial skill building initiatives, and facilitates youth connections to career guidance and mentorship opportunities. The Activity puts a specific emphasis on building youth skills and participation in policy reform, social entrepreneurship, and anti-corruption.
Component 3: Values and experience that underpin self-reliance promoted.
The Activity strengthens the capacities of youth groups; supports youth initiatives through grants; promotes research, community leadership, and service; and facilitates initiatives for changing cultural values about corruption.
The five-year Activity aims to reach 10,000 youth to improve their awareness and understanding of social and economic opportunities in North Macedonia, helping them be more connected to their communities and have a positive vision for the future. This includes 6,000 youth trained with 50% of female participation in youth leadership programs.
Project Duration: 2023-2028
Award: $7 million
Partners: Center for Entrepreneurship and Executive Development (CEED) Hub Skopje and Youth Educational Forum (YEF)
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