By Hanning Babyetsiza
In March 2019, Re!gnite Africa carried out a rapid qualitative assessment in the form of focus group discussions with district and subcounty-level youth leaders in Mayuge and Rukungiri. The purpose of these studies was to provide clarity on how Re!gnite Africa can best partner, support, and engage youth leaders at the district and lower levels in governance advocacy and accountability efforts for better social change outcomes at community levels.
Data collected will be used in refining Re!gnite Africa’s program design for better youth advocacy and accountability engagements. Youth’s public opinions and perceptions about youth leadership, representation as well as their participation in decision making and social change processes at that grass root and district levels were collected. A report and policy brief will be compiled and shared once it’s ready.
Led by a team of three from Re!gnite Africa, discussions in the two districts were centered on understanding the roles and responsibilities of district youth leaders, the successes and challenges they face in the process of trying to take part in policy advocacy and governance processes as well as involvement in social change and accountability processes.
The discussions were limited to small numbers of ten participants per district and they were conversational in nature, free and voluntary; guided by well-structured questions. Additionally, with support from focal youth representatives from each district, communication during discussions was mainly done in local languages predominantly used in each of the districts.
From the collected data, RA looks forward to being informed of better strategies to refine youth advocacy and accountability programming to promote an active generation of young leaders in governance processes. This enables young people to become advocates that demand improved quality public service delivery and generally promote positive social change efforts in their communities.