Youth Programme on Elections and Governance

This programme is designed to strengthen the quality of youth engagement in electoral and political governance processes in Africa. In 2014, it was reported that over 35% of Africa's population are people between the ages of 15 and 35 years old. Despite this demographic dominance, African youth's participation in key political processes is either low or negative. We believe that the quality of leaders chosen by a society forms the bedrock of the type of society that emerges. Through the Youth Programme, we challenge African youth to link the creation of the Africa of their dreams, with the kind of leaders they help choose through the electoral processes.


Regional Training Workshops on Elections and Governance

MINDS provides civic education on elections and governance to African youth through regional training workshops. The content covered in these workshops familiarizes African youth with electoral and governance processes relevant to their countries. Participants are equipped with knowledge and skills to enable them to mobilize peers and meaningfully participate in electoral processes. With an understanding of governance systems, African youth can make informed choices regarding how, or if, these systems can benefit their quest for a continent they envision.

Youth Dialogues

The MINDS Youth Dialogue is an annual gathering of young African leaders who have demonstrated a commitment to the development of Africa, practical involvement in elections and governance and the ability to mobilize other youth towards a set goal. At each Dialogue, we facilitate conversations between 100 youth, drawn from across the continent, and experienced African leaders with the aim of exploring the kind of Africa the youth can aspire to create for themselves. Topics addressing the role and impact of youth in elections and governance on the continent are researched prior to the Dialogue and discussed at the event.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

  1. How can I attend a MINDS Youth Programme event?

    Interested individuals who meet the qualifying criteria are invited to apply to attend our events. The invitation to apply is announced on our website, Facebook and Twitter accounts before the opening of applications.
  2. Who can apply to attend MINDS Youth Programme events?

    Youth Programme events are targeted at:
    • African youth aged between 18 and 45 years old.
    • Individuals who are resident in Africa.
    • Individuals who have demonstrated the ability to mobilize other youth towards a set goal, involvement in elections and governance and a commitment to Africa's development through practical community involvement.
    You are welcome to submit an application if you meet all of the criteria above and any other specific criteria set out on each application form.

  3. Where are the events held?

    MINDS hosts four regional civic education workshops and on elections and governance and one Dialogue per annual cycle. The workshops are held in Southern, East, North and West Africa. Central African countries are invited to any of these workshops depending on geographical proximity, language commonalities and ease of travel. MINDS lists the countries that are invited to apply when the call for applications is made.
    The Dialogue is open to applicants from all African countries and is held in a different country each year. The host country is announced when applications open.

  4. Why is my country not listed under its region? / Why is my country listed under a different region?

    We try as best as we can to keep countries within their regional grouping but because of geographical proximity, language commonalities and ease of travel, some countries are included in other regional groupings.

  5. How many times can I apply to attend a MINDS Youth Programme event?

    If you have never attended a MINDS event, you are welcome to apply as many times as you are willing to try. However, if you have already been to a MINDS event, we encourage you not to re-apply.

  6. What expenses will I Incur to attend a MINDS Youth programme event?

    MINDS covers the cost of air travel to and from the closest international airport, the cost of accommodation and meals while during the event and actual visa fees (not other expenses associated with obtaining a visa) on production of valid receipts. MINDS does not cover the following costs:
    • Any expenses incurred during the application and selection process.
    • Any expenses incurred in obtaining medical clearance or medical documentation to travel.
    • Any visa fees, IF a selected candidate ends up cancelling their attendance at the event or if they fail to obtain all necessary travel documentation to allow them to attend the event.
    • Any other expense incurred in trying to obtain a visa/s other than the actual visa fees.
    • Any other incidental expenses incurred during travels to and/ or from the event. This includes in-transit accommodation or transportation.
    • Any incidental expenses incurred during the event.
    • Any costs incurred in conducting tours or expeditions during the event.
    • Any expenses incurred in communicating with the MINDS team.
    The list above is not exhaustive. Confirmed participants are provided a comprehensive list of expenses that are not covered by MINDS.

  7. Can I sponsor myself or other participants to attend a MINDS Youth Programme event?

    We welcome financial contributions that enable us to extend our reach. If you would like to sponsor yourself to attend a Youth Programme event, contact us. However, you can only sponsor yourself once you have been selected to attend the event.
    To sponsor other participants or make donations to our organisation, please send an email to

  8. If I am not successful in attending an event, how else can I get involved?

    Kindly send an email to and we will share your contact details with MINDS Alumni in your region or country so that they can alert you to any local initiatives.