The Kefeta Program in Ethiopia is Uplifting Millions of Youth

Kefeta, an unprecedented program in Ethiopia, is uplifting 2 million youth

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Amref Health Africa, in partnership with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), has launched Kefeta, a project across 18 major cities in Ethiopia that aims to empower Ethiopian youths to advance their economic, civic, and social opportunities. 

Kefeta, which means “to elevate” in Ethiopia’s Amharic language, is creating a nationwide network of services to reach two million young people aged 15-29 by 2026.

Services include establishing and remodeling youth hubs, establishing career development centers, access to gender-sensitive and youth-friendly health services, basic functional adult literacy sessions for out of school youth, employability and digital skills trainings, business incubation support for youth entrepreneurs, and the first-ever youth owned and lead Savings and Credit Cooperatives (SACCOs), among others.

Kefeta is giving young people the skills, tools and support to shape a better future for themselves and the country.

Some poignant facts demonstrating the need to help Ethiopian youth:
– In 2019, 2.6 million youth were out of school, and only 29% of young people finished secondary school.
– In 2020, urban youth unemployment rate was 25%, leading to youth on the street, adolescent girls and young women getting involved in commercial sex work, and attributing to youth substance abuse.
– 24% of girls reported experiencing some form of physical violence and 30% reported being victims to rape.

Nearly 67% of the country’s urban population is under the age of 29, and 40% of the country is under 15 years. Kefeta is readying the youth ecosystem to accommodate this growth and is paramount for the country’s socioeconomic and political transformation.

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