ICRW and Partners Embark on USAID Initiative Focused on Empowering Youth

Article Date

08 July 2015

Article Author

Iba Reller

Media Contact

Anne McPherson

Vice President, Global Communications email [email protected]

The International Center for Research on Women (ICRW) has partnered with Making Cents International – the prime contractor selected by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) – to embark on a new project focused on advancing programs that serve and empower youth around the world.

The project, YouthPower, is a USAID Agency-wide project to strengthen local, national, and global youth systems and programs to achieve sustainable, positive youth outcomes in health, education, and political and economic empowerment. The goal of this project is to improve the ability of youth to lead healthy, productive lives and increase their engagement in development efforts.

As part of USAID’s YouthPower Indefinite Delivery Indefinite Quantity Contract (IDIQ), Making Cents International has been selected by USAID to be the prime contractor for the five-year YouthPower: Evidence and Evaluation Task Order 1, which has an overall ceiling of $21 million. 

“Forty-three percent of the world’s population is under the age of 25,” said Suzanne Petroni, senior director of gender, population and development at ICRW. “Empowering this generation to be agents of positive change is a critical component of achieving global development, and is also important for ensuring their basic human rights. We are thrilled to be a part of this work.”

ICRW is among an expert team of local and international organizations leading on this work. Other partners include: Development & Training Services; Results for Development Institute; Khulisa Management Services; Social Development Research Group at the University of Washington; Royal Children’s Hospital Academic Centre at the University of Melbourne; Child Protection in Crisis Network at Columbia University; Young Americas Business Trust; and the India-based YP Foundation.

The work under Youth Power: Evidence and Evaluation Task Order 1 will help build the evidence base and disseminate knowledge on positive youth development (PYD). ICRW will play a leading role in the consortium, designing an indicator reporting system that will bridge gaps across sectors, establish common measures, promote learning, and contribute to a comprehensive PYD framework; as well as producing the definitive global meta-review of PYD literature that expands upon the existing evidence base. With the Making Cents team, ICRW will also support the:

  • Development of a user-friendly website that uses the latest technology to enhance sharing and dissemination of knowledge and lessons learned about PYD and serves as the Learning Hub for cross-sectoral youth development;
  • Development of an inclusive, audience-specific, and demand-driven cross-sectoral Youth Learning Network and communities of practice that will improve knowledge, skills, practices, and partnerships around international cross-sectoral PYD; and
  • Provision of evidence and evaluation support to USAID through evaluation and research technical assistance.

YouthPower: Evidence and Evaluation Task Order 1 builds on USAID’s youth-related work in various sectors over the past years and is intended to provide a platform for integrated youth programming for sustainable outcomes. The results of this Task Order will contribute to increased youth use of services and opportunities; improved quality of services and opportunities for youth; and strengthened engagement of youth in development activities and policy-making processes.