The Youth and Land Multi-stakeholder Platform of the International Land Coalition (ILC) hosted a regional learning exchange in Benin from 6-10 March 2023, with the theme "Youth at the centre of accountable and inclusive land governance."
We offer a window into the world of the event and the young people who experienced it below. Join us as we dive into this visual journey.
The event gathered 10 youth representatives from 7 African countries, with the aim of promoting youth-centered land governance in the region and involving youth in shaping land reforms.
The exchange was organized by ILC and YILAA (ILC member in Benin) as part of the YLMPA's implementation. It brought together ILC/YLMPA youth to learn from each other and from local experiences on how youth are taking action to achieve land rights in Africa. The exchange also aimed to develop and improve tools for more effective advocacy, including land mapping and data production/use, and to strengthen collaboration ties to address the main challenges youth face in accessing land and protecting their territories.
The regional learning exchange provided a platform for participants to connect with each other, strengthen the Africa youth network, and identify possible common actions. Participants also interacted with ILC and YILAA’s national and regional partners, including local communities, local youth, international organizations, government, and academia, and learned from their work and experience.
During the exchange, participants also shared lessons from the ILC youth fellowship 2021-22 and familiarised themselves with fellows' innovative solutions to specific challenges in Africa (action plans). The exchange strengthened participants' knowledge and strategies and equipped them with practical skills and tools to use and produce bottom-up data, such as participatory land mapping.
Participants learned about YILAA’s experience in cultivating a regional youth network to promote young people’s land rights and empowerment, and documented and disseminated their experiences. The exchange was a valuable opportunity for young people to share their experiences and learn from each other, as well as to build networks and strengthen their advocacy efforts for inclusive and accountable land governance in Africa.
The exchange is a significant step towards promoting youth participation in land governance processes at all levels in Africa, as envisioned by ILC's 2022-2030 strategy. By amplifying young people's voices and fostering collective action, the exchange contributes to shifting power back to people’s organizations and overcoming power asymmetries in land governance.
Here is a little wrap up of how the learning exchange went