Cookies on oxfam

We use cookies to ensure that you have the best experience on our website. If you continue browsing, we’ll assume that you are happy to receive all our cookies. You can change your cookie settings at any time. Find out more Accept

Youth participation

At a glance

Taking an active voice in the reducing poverty, addressing inequality and transforming society.


Children and youth have a right to free, quality health and education services. They also have a right to voice their needs, to hold their governments to account, and to be listened to as members of society and rights-holders; as active citizens. They can play a vital role in reducing poverty and transforming their societies.

Oxfam aims to enable young people to fulfil this potential and to shape their own futures. Oxfam supports marginalized children and youth, their allies and duty bearers, to claim their rights to health and education services. This is done through training and coaching to support young people to become leaders. We also support youth groups to run campaigns and implement influencing strategies and support teachers through training materials to help students become responsible citizens.  

Related projects

Do The Right(s) Thing!

Italy, France and Croatia

In 1996, Oxfam Italia implemented a comprehensive educational programme focusing on human rights, called 'Do The Right(s) Thing!'. The programme (a collaboration with other NGOs, regional government and partners) was an annual educational project implemented throughout the school year in the Tuscany Region. The focus is on enabling and supporting school students (primarily aged 15-18 years) and teachers to engage with a specific article of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) and its interrelation with global development, social justice, and North/South relations. By 2014, the programme had involved 200,000 students between the ages of 11 to 18. In 2014, it scaled up with support from the EU and is was implemented in Normandy (France) and Istria (Croatia).

Enabling Environments: My Rights, My Voice

Afghanistan, Georgia, Mali, Nepal, Niger, Pakistan, Tanzania and Vietnam

The My Rights My Voice (MRMV) programme focuses on engaging children and youth in their rights to health and education services. Part of the approach was focused specifically on enabling youth spaces so young people felt safe and empowered to engage and claim their rights.

Digital Communication & Political Participation

After the revolution in Tunisia, young people who were on the street on 14 January were not playing an active role in the transition process to a new government. Oxfam in Tunisia then started supporting two new youth organisations- Al Bawsala and Baladia Marsad.

The youth group Al Bawsala works on the issues of access to information, in amongst others, the writing and design of the new Tunisian constitution, and citizens' political participation, using the Internet and new technologies as their main tools. All the people involved in the group are 18-30 years old. Al Bawsala is the main source of information when it comes to the events and developments in the Tunisian Parliament. They participate in commissions, transcribe discussions, translate articles, tweet and they actively influence the work inside the Parliament (they write and submit law proposals).

We are now supporting Al Bawsala in observing the work of municipalities in Tunisia, where they are discussing issues of budget monitoring and transparency, accountability, decentralisation processes and mobilising citizens around these issues.

Oxfam Edu

Oxfam Edu is an educational social network, which supports Oxfam Italia's Global Citizenship Education. The social network Oxfam Edu is a space gathering the educational projects of Oxfam Italia, both those which include a virtual exchange among youth and schools from Italy and the South of the World.

Every proposal deals with different topics and offers learning resources to help teachers and youth to carry out the activities and study in depth those issues. The activities have been created using active and participatory methodologies based on the cooperative learning approach.

Visit the Oxfam Edu website for more information


Young@Heart programme is a global initiative aiming to ensure that youth have the capabilities to openly, freely and effectively use their energy, skills and creativity to influence structures and affect behaviours to assert their rights. Youth as active citizens hold the power to influence decision-makers, public attitudes and beliefs and increase public involvement in youth rights.

The programme is currently being implemented by Oxfam in partnership with Uganda Youth Network and the Center for Sustainable Development Studies Vietnam (CSDS).

Youth Active Citizenship and Governance: The world walk in Quebec


The World Walk, formerly known as Marche 2/3, was created in 1970 on the initiative of CLUB 2/3 (an organization that merged with Oxfam-Québec in 2005). Every year it gathers thousands of young participants who walk in Montreal and other cities in Quebec, Canada, to celebrate their solidarity with the peoples of the world. Since its inception, more than 250 000 young people have walked a distance equivalent to two million kilometres. This is comparable to walking 50 times around the Earth.