The Pan-Africa Youth Leadership Program (PAYLP) is a development exchange program funded by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and implemented by the Meridian International Center, a U.S. based non-profit organization dedicated to strengthening international understanding and global engagement. The program brings together African students and adult mentors from across Africa for three weeks in the United States to strengthen their understanding of civic rights and responsibilities, respect for diversity, and the importance of community engagement. Since 2014, 20 Malawian participants (16 students and 4 teachers) have participated in the program.
The program supports long-range U.S. foreign policy priorities by offering secondary school youth (ages 15-18) and adult educators the opportunity to explore themes such as entrepreneurship, civic education, youth leadership, economic development, and respect for diversity. Through three-week, intensive exchanges in the United States, participants engage in workshops on leadership and service, community site visits related to the program themes and subthemes, interactive training in conflict resolution, presentations, visits to high schools, local cultural activities, and homestays with local American families. A key component of the program is for participants to develop follow-on community-based projects in their home communities and secondary schools to effect positive change after their return home.
The program includes a comprehensive overview of U.S. history and culture, as well as many core leadership development facets. Following the program in the United States, the participants will return home with a clear plan of how they can implement change in their communities. They will also be encouraged to implement their action plans through Meridian International’s network of support through the Mentoring Partnership for Young African Leaders (MYPAL) Alumni Mentors and alumni of the African Leadership Academy.
Learn More at: http://www.meridian.org/programs/paylp/