Youth in civil society

Our 2017 to 2020 goal: 7,600 young people will be leaders and partners in sustainable development

Global challenge

Half the global population is under 30, the largest group ever seen. Young people are an increasingly significant part of society. By sheer force of numbers, as well as a greater intuition with modern connecting technologies young people are essential if we are to achieve the Global Goals.

Challenge in Tanzania

Young people in Tanzania want their voices to be heard. They aspire to be involved in decision making processes and to contribute to the socio-economic development of their country. They have the commitment, creativity, and passion to make real change. But they often lack the skills, knowledge and opportunities this requires. These issues are particularly difficult for young women and rural youth to overcome. Raleigh Tanzania will work to create an environment which values and supports youth civic participation regardless of background or gender: where poverty and education levels won’t hold young people back; where culture and traditions are celebrated but not limiting; and where young people are able to safely hold stakeholders to account.

Youth in civil society projects

Social Accountability through Youth (SAY)

Youth-led sustainable development organisation Raleigh Tanzania, and partner Integrity Action (IA), have launched an innovative new project in Tanzania which will see young people in rural communities holding development projects, and the organisations delivering them, to account.

The project, Social Accountability through Youth (SAY), has been awarded a four-year UK Aid Direct funding grant from the UK government. It will be implemented by Raleigh Tanzania, in partnership with IA, between April 2018 and March 2022.

SAY aims to increase the success rate and value for money of development spending in the Dodoma, Iringa and Morogoro regions of Tanzania, benefitting more than 500,000 people. It will do this by empowering over 400 young women and men, including people with disabilities, to effectively and independently monitor project delivery across 179 communities. Through improved reporting systems – such as a dedicated app named DevCheck – and specialised training, these young Tanzanians will gain an increased ability and confidence to hold development organisations to account and encourage their communities to do the same.

The communities targeted through SAY will be linked with other development organisations and local government authorities, who will support the community-led approach with monitoring visits and encourage the use of this accountability model in other areas. Additionally, over 1,900 other communities will be targeted through media and face-to-face campaigns on the benefits of social accountability and the steps they can take to establish community-led, autonomous monitoring of development projects in their own areas.

Why is Social Accountability through Youth in Tanzania important?

Substantial development spending is taking place in the Dodoma, Iringa and Morogoro regions of Tanzania. However, development projects in these areas do not regularly use transparent social accountability systems. This can often lead to marginalised groups, such as young people and those with disabilities, not having a voice in how the projects are implemented in their own communities. SAY will increase the success rate and value for money of development investments.

Tanzania’s population is also among the youngest in the world and young people represent a vital asset in improving the transparency, value for money, equity and sustainability of development projects. It is Raleigh International’s belief that providing young people with the knowledge, skills and social capital they need is vital for them to support their communities and hold development organisations to account.

Our approach

STEP 1: In the regions targeted, 35 young people will be identified, recruited and trained as Youth Cluster Coordinators (YCCs), leading initial baselines and formative research to ensure that the project approach is fully relevant to the local context.

STEP 2: YCCs will recruit 358 local youth as Community Monitors (CMs) from 179 communities, training and supporting them to use appropriate means to gather feedback on project delivery. The CMs will be supported to ensure that no-one is excluded from participating in the process.

STEP 3: Supported by the YCCs, SAY’s 358 CMs will empower communities to identify issues in the delivery of local projects. Results will be uploaded to IA’s DevCheck platform and presented locally to Joint Working Groups (JWGs) – collaborative forums comprised of community leadership, implementing agencies and local and regional government authorities.

STEP 4: Working together through the JWGs, all stakeholders including the CMs and implementing agencies will discuss and agree on solutions to any issues identified. Fixes that have been agreed will be publicised through regular community events and online, closing the feedback loop.

STEP 5: 15 SAY Campaign Coordinators (SCCs) will be recruited and trained to run inclusive campaigns enthusing marginalised groups and local leaders in additional communities to undertake community-led accountability on future projects. The dissemination of a toolkit will further enhance the capacity of the communities to embed the model.

STEP 6: Regional and district authorities will undertake joint monitoring visits to communities alongside implementing agencies. SAY aims to ensure that autonomous, transparent and collaborative community feedback will be encouraged as a norm for all future project delivery in the three regions. SAY aims to support the signing of agreements to this end by the three regional administrative secretariats by 2022.

Exchange for Campaigns, Empowerment and Leadership (ExCEL)


ExCEL is a south-south exchange programme, which aims to develop leadership, project-design and campaigning skills for young alumni from Raleigh ‘Societies*’ in Tanzania, Nicaragua, and Nepal. The project is designed and led by Raleigh Societies (alumni groups), in partnership with three Raleigh country offices. The exchange is funded by FK Norway, a Norwegian government agency under the department for Foreign Affairs.

14 participants from Tanzania, Nicaragua and Nepal will spend 3 months in Tanzania and 3 months in Nepal to undertake experiential training in the use of project design and implementation techniques to enhance the impact of their own and their societies’ future initiatives.

Activities on the exchange comprise the first part of the campaign cycle: using formative research to analyse the issues, enabling in-depth strategic campaign design and planning. Research will focus on building understanding of the behaviour of individuals and their communities, to inform delivery of effective campaign for change related to the issues identified by participants during their induction.

On return to their respective countries, they will cascade skills and knowledge to their own Raleigh Societies, and based on their learning during the exchange, empower their alumni peers to deliver campaigns which create positive behavioural change, and contribute towards the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Through a series of training workshops, they will also contribute to development of National Society leadership structures, their ability to develop effectives partnerships, and their capacity to design their own projects in the future.

*Comprised of alumni from Raleigh International volunteering programmes, young people, passionate about social change have used their skills in leadership and relationship building to grow a very active youth movement. Raleigh Tanzania Society (RTS), Raleigh Nicaragua Society (RNS) and Raleigh Nepal Society (RNeS) have been supported to develop their own leadership structures and begin designing and delivering campaigns focused on the green growth agenda. These campaigns have not only been successful in achieving positive change for communities in Nicaragua and Tanzania but have also gone some way in creating an enabling environment where the value of the contribution young people can make to the development of their own communities is being recognised.

However, in order to maintain momentum and increase the impact of the societies’ activities, more needs to be done to ensure more young people are able to develop their capabilities in the design and implementation of successful programmes and campaigns. A south-south exchange programme will provide national society members with the opportunity to build our capacity in all elements of successful programme and campaign design, and to build our leadership skills. It will enable them to fully engage in the development and implementation of two youth-led campaigns, through a three-step process:

  • Firstly, national society members will receive technical training from Raleigh Tanzania (RT) and Raleigh Nicaragua (RN), empowering us with technical skills and knowledge in programme design and implementation, and in organisational leadership.
  • Following a period of training, the societies will utilise Raleigh tools and processes to conduct formative research into the drivers of behaviour in one of RI’s three thematic areas: WASH, NRM or Livelihoods. The results will be used to inform the design of campaigns which target positive changes in behaviours. Leadership tools and review processes will be employed to develop leadership skills throughout the exchange. This experiential approach to learning will build the capacities of society members through our active engagement in all elements of the process, encouraging us to problem solve, lead and collaborate in an enabling environment facilitated by both RN and RT.
  • On returning from the exchange, society members will actively involve the broader membership in our home countries in refining the design, and subsequent implementation of our campaigns. Leadership skills and knowledge learned experientially will be applied to administration and leadership processes for each society
  • Supported by RT and RN, this exchange project will empower RTS and RNS to increase our capabilities to engage more young people in the design and implementation of successful campaigns that support the achievement of the global goals.

Youth for Green Growth (Y4GG)

With the generous support of the Oak Foundation, Raleigh Tanzania and Raleigh Nicaragua implemented the Y4GG project in Tanzania and Nicaragua. The project has enabled 69 volunteers from Tanzania and Nicaragua to participate in experiential learning opportunities in leadership and active citizenship.

By taking part in Y4GG, these volunteers have increased their skills, knowledge and social capital and are now pursuing social and environmental action projects which advance the green growth agenda and will contribute to the achievement of the SDGs in their countries.


  • #50milliontrees, a nationwide campaign launched by the Raleigh Tanzania Society (RTS) has resulted in over 40,000 trees being planted so far.
  • Campaign awareness sessions reached 10,000 beneficiaries (of whom 75% are school children) with a call to action for young people advocate against deforestation and encourage the sustainable management of natural resources.
  • Providing a platform through which Tanzanian youth could use their knowledge and skills to influence decision makers, two conferences organised by RTS were attended by over 100 participants each.
  • Reinforcing the need to involve young people in development networks, the conferences brought youth together with sustainable development partners including Restless Development, Tanzania Bora Initiative, Youth of United Nations and UNESCO, alongside government officials and other decision makers. Participants reached agreement that the Government should work consultatively with CBOs, NGOs, the private sector and youth groups to address deforestation.
  • During the conferences 150,000 people, including at least 35,000 youth, were reached via social media, radio and newspapers over on #Youth4GreenGrowth.
  • Y4GG enabled collaboration with the Tanzanian Bora Initiative which aims to promote democracy through increased engagement between youth and leaders. The Initiative supported the drafting of the RTS’ 4-year strategy and the election of RTS national leaders and five regional representatives.