Pathways Out of Poverty for Youth in Africa

by The African Impact Foundation
Pathways Out of Poverty for Youth in Africa
Pathways Out of Poverty for Youth in Africa
Pathways Out of Poverty for Youth in Africa
Pathways Out of Poverty for Youth in Africa
Pathways Out of Poverty for Youth in Africa
Pathways Out of Poverty for Youth in Africa
Pathways Out of Poverty for Youth in Africa
Pathways Out of Poverty for Youth in Africa
Pathways Out of Poverty for Youth in Africa
Pathways Out of Poverty for Youth in Africa
Pathways Out of Poverty for Youth in Africa
Pathways Out of Poverty for Youth in Africa

Over the 12 years of the African Impact Foundation's progress, we have seen first-hand how youth face specific challenges and have a window of time to make decisions about their future. This stage in life can be an opportunity to foster hope and a drive for the future; however, when the challenges of poverty escalate, there are many risks for young adults, especially when there is a lack of choices for their future. Zambian girls and boys face challenges such as economic vulnerability, social isolation, and lack of appropriate health information and services, which prevent a healthy transition from girlhood into womanhood and boyhood into manhood. Girls face high rates of Gender-based violence and unsafe sex, which increases their risk for unwanted pregnancy, HIV infections, and school dropout. Boys, on the other hand, face Gender-based violence and substance abuse, leading to a high theft rate, unsafe sex, and increased risk of HIV infections as well as school dropout. These lead to a lack of economic resources, income-generating options, and a general lack of agency in shaping their lives. The root cause of these vulnerabilities is primarily determined by girls' and boys' weak social, health, and economic assets. The Youth Insaka program aims to build these assets as an interconnected approach toward mitigating girls' and boys' vulnerabilities. 

The overall goal of the Youth Insaka Program is to promote the holistic development of adolescents and young adults in accordance with the African Impact Foundation's impact areas of Wellness, Education, Gender Equality, and Livelihoods. 

The main objectives of this program, among many are: 

o   To instill skills among adolescents to enable them to overcome the challenges of growing up and becoming responsible adults. These skills include communication, decision-making, assertiveness, setting goals, and resisting peer pressure.

o   To reinforce and promote attitudes and behaviors that will lead to a better quality of life for adolescents.

o   To increase adolescent girls' and boys' knowledge of reproductive health and sexuality,

o   To ensure youth voices in the community are heard

o   To create a solid avenue to advocate our mission to the community

o   To empower young people to help make a change.

o   Develop leadership skills in multiple disciplines. 

This program aims to equip participants with life skills and knowledge to help them maintain happy and healthy lifestyles and be empowered with the confidence to assert their rights and protect themselves from harm and threats. Since its inception, we have so far seen a significant change in the lives of the adolescents and youths involved, as we can see from the feedback below: 

"We are very that they are privileged to be taught about such topics because they have come across many pregnant teens, some of whom they have heard say they got sexually transmitted diseases. "So, for them, it is a good thing that they are sensitized

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Earlier this year, we announced our new collaboration with LETS – Lets empower women. An NGO with a key focus on educating women and girls about reproductive health and the tools needed to prevent early/unwanted pregnancies. This is an exciting expansion of our gender equity activities. It has been possible to achieve this growth thanks to your continued generosity and support towards our programmes.

In Livingstone, Zambia women and girls face significant barriers to accessing essential sexual and reproductive health education or services. Sexual Reproductive health is important for women’s general health and wellbeing. It is central to their ability to make choices and decisions about their lives, including when, or whether, to consider having children. Reproductive health is not only about physical wellbeing, it includes the right to healthy and respectful relationships, health services that are inclusive, access to accurate information, effective and affordable methods of contraception, and access to timely support and services.

On the 17th of August 2022, we will kickstart our first session under the LETS programme. Through the LETS training undergone by our team, women and girls will be empowered by means of proven education and tools to make informed choices about their reproductive health and basic well-being. 

-       Women and girls will gain an understanding of reproductive health. 

-       Women and girls will gain an understanding of their menstrual cycle.

-       Women and girls will be able to use beaded bracelets as a tool to track their menstrual cycle. 

Educated women are more likely to use contraception, marry later, have fewer children, and know more about reproductive health. Thank you so much for continuing to support our programmes and creating pathways out of poverty 



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Changing lives through educational support is one such program so close to our hearts. The feeling is so heartwarming and fulfilling.  

This is an amusing true life story Rhodah Mvula who is a former sponsor and sponsor a future beneficiary.

This is what she had to say when we made a follow up of what she is currently doing after completing her high school through sponsor a child and sposnor a future. Not only was she sponsored in her school but also further helped to study a course in Hotel Management at one of the most prominent skills training center called Youth Community Training Centre.

She is now a cashier in one of the big Chinese shops in Livingstone and doing so well. We asked her how she feels with the support and this is what she had to say……. ‘I am very grateful to African Impact Foundation and more especially the sponsors that supported me all the way as back as when I was in G6 (Primary School) through to high school and training centre. Without the sponsors, I would not be where am today. I have my own earnings and I can make tangible decisions about my life all because I was lifted from my deep pit by African Impact Foundation and partners. Apart from working, I am now happily married with two kids and have a job’.

She further encouraged those on sponsorship not to take donor support lightly, but strive to study hard because not everyone has the chance to be sponsored, count yourself lucky if you are being supported she said

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In Zambia, only 4% of young people that complete secondary school go on to higher education. In our long standing Sponsor a Child initiative we’re supporting young people through their school years, but with Sponsor a Future, we are now able to expand their opportunities after they finish school.

The other day I was grateful to meet Francis, a previous beneficiary for Sponsor a Child, and now part of the Sponsor a Future project, and sit down with him for a chat about his experiences. Livingstone is where Francis grew up and went to school, but he now resides about 7 hours away in Lusaka, where he is currently studying a degree in Clinical Engineering. 

I’m lucky to have caught him - next week he will return to Lusaka to continue his first year of his studies. He shows me the papers with his work, the content of which I have no chance of understanding, but what I do understand is the 85% and 95% scribbled on the top with red marker. He shrugs at my excitement that he’s doing so well, but he smiles at me proudly when I ask to take a picture of him with his scores.

Francis has been supported by the sponsorship program starting in grade 10, as his family were struggling to pay his school fees; “I think I never had enough funds to take myself to school, my parents didn’t have money to take me to school, but this organisation thought of my potential.”

Read more about Francis - here

Your support makes a pathway out of poverty possible for people like Francis - donate today

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Starting from a small desk in Livingstone, we were established 13 years ago as a way to responsibly manage the generous donations received from volunteers working on African Impact projects. But because of you, we have grown to be so much more than that.

Although the past year and a half has been challenging, it’s also been really exciting because of the time we’ve dedicated to strengthening our mission. We want to make more impact in the amazing communities we work with, and have stronger relationships with the incredible people, like you, that support us. 

Our new mission is to equip young people with education and skills to move out of poverty. This holistic approach will focus on four pillars that give young people the best chance of real, long-term change to break the cycle of poverty for themselves and their community. Education, Wellness, Livelihoods, and Gender Equality. Watch our new video to hear from the team why this approach is integral for impact - click here.

You are already such an important part of our impact family, and it feels like we’re just getting started! Together we can set young people up for healthy and opportunity-filled futures.

Thank you so much for joining us on this journey! 

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Organization Information

The African Impact Foundation

Location: Muizenberg, Western Cape - South Africa
Facebook: Facebook Page
Project Leader:
Sarah Nielsen
Muizenberg, Western Cape South Africa
$21,290 raised of $25,000 goal
192 donations
$3,710 to go
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