(Grant) Increasing young people’s participation in slum upgrading and development



Approval Date
Actual Completion Date
Proposal Focus
Core Focus
Secondary Cities
Country Type
Sierra Leone


97% of the urban population in Sierra Leone lives in slum communities which are characterised by poor housing, overcrowding, poverty, unsanitary conditions and vulnerability to natural hazards. Young people are among those most affected by these problems; over 60% are unemployed and have little influence in the development of their communities. This application builds on a successful project implemented by Sierra Leone YMCA and YCI in Freetown from 2007-12, which enabled 20,000 slum dwellers to access clean water, approximately 800 young people to be supported with livelihood interventions, 2,500 slum dwellers to access savings/credit, and led to local government agreeing to abolish forced evictions in a target community. The application aims to expand this work into new communities in Freetown. It will provide vocational, entrepreneurship life-skills training, and post-training inputs to young people; support slum dwellers to establish savings/credit groups and advocate for improvements in their communities; strengthen the capacity of young people to engage with local decision makers and participate in slum upgrading initiatives; as well as build the capacity of Freetown City Council in terms of slum upgrading and development approaches that are inclusive and pro-poor. Through these activities, the project will lead to lasting improvements in the living conditions and well-being of young people and their families in slum communities.
The project aims to empower young slum dwellers for the social and economic transformation in slum communities in Freetown. Specifically: (1) Improve engagement of young people in 2 slum communities in Freetown with government and other development actors on local slum upgrading issues; (2) Increase economic resilience of 200 young slum dwellers through the provision of entrepreneurship and life skills training and start-up capital ; (3) Make slum upgrading/urban planning processes more responsive to the needs of young people and other vulnerable slum dwellers Increase capacity of Freetown City Council and other local organisations.
1.1 Carrying out recreational activities for 50 young people as an entry point into discussing civic engagement and advocacy (it is estimated that up to 1,000 young people will be involved overall including spectating / supporting) 1.2 Implementing of advocacy strategy and civic engagement activities (the strategy development is part of broader five-year YCI /YMCA project) 1.3 Facilitating engagement between young people and Freetown City Council (FCC) 2.1 Identifying and selecting of training beneficiaries 2.2 Developing and carrying out entrepreneurship and life skills training programme targeting 150 young people 2.3 Providing vocational skills training for 50 young people (including allowances to trainees) 2.4 Providing of post-training start-up support to all trainees 3.1 Providing technical training and support to CODOHSAPA , FEDURP members and other youth associations 3.2 Conducting community enumerations in Colbot and Mo Wharf 3.3. Conducting Youth-led community mapping exercises in Colbot and Mo Wharf 4.1 Interactive seminars involving councillors and FCC technical staff 4.2 Conducting a city-wide profiling and mapping to establish relevant data to help strengthen its revenue collection drive 4.3 Organising International exchange learning for FCC political and technical staff 4.4 Providing technical and capacity building by YCI to the YMCA
Expected Impacts and Results