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Youth employment

Bimala Balami is part of cash for work (irrigation channels) in Dachi Nkali municipality, Kathmandu valley.

At a glance

Working with youth to create employment opportunities, develop skills, promote innovation and support entrepreneurs.  


Oxfam focuses on empowering youth for employment through: improved vocational training; increasing employment opportunities via the development of small and medium enterprises; building the number of youth entrepreneurs; and removing the barriers that face marginalized young women. This programme is global, with emphasis on Asia, Africa, the Middle East and Latin America. 

Our approach focuses on active citizenship as the first step to reducing underemployment. If job creation is one of the means to address issues of unemployment, there must also be training on entering and remaining in the work force with the focus of developing confidence and creating an enabling environment.

To this end, our programmes are designed through co-creation. This means that we develop the program together with youth to ensure it is relevant, context specific and enables a shared ownership. This method also invites different perspectives which help to spark innovation. We also work with a wide range of global partners on youth programmes including civil society, governments and the private sector.

Related projects

Empower youth for work

Portraits of young people from Pakistan, Ethiopia, Bangladesh and Indonesia

It is often said that young people are the future. But what does that mean for young people in the present? While those in positions of power are happy to bequeath them the problems of tomorrow, young people are largely excluded from the decision-making processes which affect them in the here and now.

We believe that youth should be able to pursue their dreams. Work can be a way to get there. Together with young people between the ages of 15 and 25, we're creating ways to find meaningful work. Fair income helps empower young people in the face of today's harsh realities, including climate change and gender inequality.

Visit the Empower youth for work site.

Youth Employment and Livelihood Improvement (Uganda)

In Uganda, we work to improve youth employment and livelihoods by providing youth with access to Internet services, as well as education in web design, IT skills, creative multimedia and entrepreneurship to increase their employment opportunities. Furthermore, although 85% of the Ugandan population work in the agricultural sector, many young people are not engaged in farming. Oxfam works to promote changes of attitude and reduce negative perceptions of farming within youth groups. Oxfam also targets urban youth that leave or drop out of school and provides them with the necessary vocational and life skills to enable them to earn a decent income and/or employment to positively contribute to social-economic progress as they enter the labour market.


  • Empower youth to actively participate and contribute to individual and national growth and stability
  • Empower young people by supporting establishment of enabling conditions under which young people can act on their own behalf and on their own terms, and not at the direction of others
  • Empower youth by developing their skills, building their confidence, enhancing their public speaking techniques, and building networks so that they are able to engage with stakeholders