African Union, African Youth Ambassadors for Peace (AYAP)
Applicationis now open for African Union, African Youth Ambassadors for Peace (AYAP), As part of the efforts to advance the Youth, Peace and Security (YPS) agenda of the African Union (AU), the Peace and Security Department (now the Political Affairs, Peace and Security Department, PAPS), launched the Youth for Peace (Africa) Program (Y4P) in September 2018, with the primary objective of facilitating the meaningful participation of African youth in all spectrum of peace and security and dissuading their participation in violence. To enhance youth participation in the peace and security agenda on the continent, the AU Peace and Security Council (PSC) during its 807th meeting requested the AU Commission to appoint five regional African Youth Ambassadors for Peace (AYAP) to work with the AU Youth Envoy in championing the promotion of peace and security on the continent.
The AYAPs, working under the direct supervision of the leadership of PAPS of the AUC shall champion the promotion and advocacy of youth participation in peace and security issues at the regional level and across Africa. Specifically, the AYAPs will promote the actualization of the five priorities of the Continental Framework on Youth, Peace and Security (CFYPS), which are guided by Article 17 of the AU Youth Charter (2006) and the United Nations Security Council Resolution Council (UNSCR) 2250 (2015), 2419 (2018) and 2535 (2020).
The first round of AYAPs were selected, in collaboration with RECs/RMs following a rigorous screening process and were presented to the PSC at its second open session on YPS in November 2019 for consideration and subsequent submission to the Assembly for endorsement. Subsequently, on recommendation by the PSC, the 33rd Ordinary Session of the Assembly of Heads of States and Governments held in February 2020 endorsed the appointment of the AYAPs. The current AYAPs were elected for a two-year non-renewable tenure (February 2020 to February 2022) with the primary mandate to advocate and promote the mainstreaming and inclusion of young Africans in peace and security by amplifying their contributions and resilience, challenges and encouraging policy and programmatic actions to address the challenges and enhance their contributions.
Criteria and Qualification
An African Youth with demonstrated commitment and significant contribution to the promotion of sustainable peace and security. Applications from eligible youth, including young women, displaced persons and persons with disabilities who meet the following criteria are particularly encouraged:
• Be between the ages of 15 to 35 in tandem with the AU Youth age;
• Possess university degree in international relations, peace and conflict, political science, law and related areas; a master’s degree would be an added advantage; or, have at least 2 years’ experience in peace and security with demonstrated ability for advocacy on youth, peace and security issues as well as resource mobilization; • Have experience in promoting and supporting peace processes, especially in initiating and facilitating multi-stakeholder dialogues and mediation efforts; • Have a strong track record with the local community/area where he/she works;
• Possess strong communication and advocacy skills;
• English, French, Arabic, Portuguese are the working languages of the AU. Fluency in any AU working language is required; knowledge of another AU language would be an asset.
Mission of the AYAPs
The AYAPs shall:
• advocate for the promotion of rights for young people in his/her region;
• advocate and raise awareness on the AU CFYPS and its 10-Year Implementation Plan in their region;
• encourage and support AU Member States in the region with the coordination of the Y4P program to enhance the development of National Action Plans and its implementation in their region;
• implement regional youth activities covering the five (5) priority areas;
• on request, represent the AU PAPS in meetings, trainings and workshops.
The mission of the AYAPs is premised on the AU CFYPS’ five priorities:
- Participation: advocate and promote active and meaningful participation of youths at all levels of decision-making, policy formulation, implementation and monitoring of peace and security decisions/agreements; support cross-sectoral cooperation as a holistic approach to youth issues and for elimination of structural barriers to youth participation; and support the development and implementation of national action plans to encourage young people’s meaningful participation in peace and security through existing national and regional structures.
- Prevention: promote and strengthen youth capacity on prevention via peace education, support to the establishment and implementation of peace architectures; facilitate entry points for competent youth to undertake violence prevention activities including youth-led or support to dialogue and mediation processes; Reinforce the potential of youth by canvassing support for the establishment of investments and funds that enable inclusion of youth into different projects to ensure access to education, vocational training as well as employment opportunities, with a view to reducing youth unemployment and their attendant vulnerabilities to exploitation, manipulation, radicalization and recruitment by extremist, criminal and armed groups.
- Protection: advocate and promote compliance to international humanitarian and human rights law to guarantee the protection of young people during armed conflicts and facilitate safe movement and resettlement of displaced persons, to mitigate risk of forced recruitment as well as sexual and gender-based violence.
- Partnerships and Coordination: facilitate the effective coordination and communication between youth and relevant stakeholders on planning and evaluation of interventions to promote peace and security; promote increased, coordinated and sustained political, financial and technical support to reinforce youth-led initiatives on peace and security.
- Disengagement and Rehabilitation: promote programmes aimed at effective repatriation, resettlement, disarmament, demobilization, reintegration and rehabilitation of youth disengaged from armed or extremist groups. Promote training for young people to support reconstruction and stabilization activities of areas affected by war, including ensuring that the specific needs of young women and men are met; promote young people’s capacities to act as relief and recovery agents in conflict and post-conflict situations.