About the YD CoLab
The Youth Development Collaboration Lab (YD CoLab) is a developing network of organisations and individuals who work towards advancing youth development and empowerment in South Africa. We are a collective of youth development enthusiasts, ecosystem actors, organisations and individuals committed to advancing a more effective systems response and work to advance the youth development agenda.
The YD CoLab has the following goals:
- Building a collective voice for youth development organisations and others in the ecosystem
- Mapping the youth development ecosystem.
- Advocating for effective practice in youth development
- Supporting Organisations that are delivering services to youth with shared resources, best practice, and learning
Why and how YD CoLab came to be
A consistently emerging theme from discussions and webinars around the youth development agenda of the need for civil society organisations in the Youth Development sector to have a formal structure and voice to engage with government, public and private sectors. Following several meetings and engagements, in July 2020 enke: Make Your Mark, Afrika Tikkun and Harambee hosted a discussion on building collaboration between and a collective voice for youth development practitioners and organisations. A key outcome from that discussion was to have a small working group/steering committee do further work on defining what the collaboration would be and a way forward. Since the meeting, 10 individuals volunteered and have been working to provide definition to the collaboration work and move the agenda forward.
This working group – the YD CoLab Steering Committee – has met several times to come up with a definition of the collective and are engaging with various stakeholders to build the YD CoLab into a powerful voice and place for youth development enthusiasts to meet, work together and make the changes. The entity is currently being formalised and preparing to onboard members.