From rhetoric to action: delivering for young women in Africa


In a world that is highly patriarchal and ageist, young african women between the ages of 15 and 35 find themselves in a conundrum, frequently facing a double burden brought about by their gender and age, and falling through the cracks of government programmes. While the need to empower young women is often couched in an argument of numbers, this policy brief argues that through enhanced action and deliberate policy choices to promote their development and equality, young women will be better placed to make meaningful contributions to Africa’s aspirations as laid out in agenda 2063 and the global 2030 agenda for Sustainable Development.

About the authors

Peter Aling’o is the head of the Nairobi office at the Institute for Security Studies (ISS), and a senior researcher in the Crime and Justice programme. He joined the ISS in September 2013. Prior to this, he worked as the Executive Director at the Institute for Education in Democracy, since 2003. He is a lawyer by training and has been an advocate of the high court of Kenya since 1993. Aling’o holds a masters degree in law from the University of Hull in the United Kingdom, a bachelor of law degree from the University of Nairobi and a postgraduate diploma in law from the Kenya School of Law.

Nebila Abdulmelik is a pan-Africanist and a feminist currently serving as a Knowledge Management Expert at the African Governance Architecture Secretariat at the African Union Commission in Addis Ababa. She previously worked in Nairobi with FEMNET, one of the oldest and largest pan-African organisations working to advance the rights of women and girls. Nebila is passionate about the use of storytelling and the creative arts, including photography and poetry, to speak her peace and push the social justice agenda.

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