WYA Middle East Receives a Grant from the United Nations Democracy Fund

New York – The World Youth Alliance Middle East has received a grant of 200,000 USD from the United Nations Democracy Fund for a project to train young leaders in five Arab countries. The project, named the Emerging Leaders of the Arab Region, will harness the potential of young people towards “constructively building free, just, and democratic societies”.

The project will run for two years and train a total of 620 young leaders in Lebanon, Jordan, Morocco, Tunisia and the United Arab Emirates. The project will cover topics on freedom, democracy and human rights. Lack of progress in these areas is at the heart of instability and upheaval in a region where human civilizations started.

Jessica Hallak, Regional Director of WYA Middle East noted that “the absence of substantial grassroots civil society organizations for young people has resulted in capacity weaknesses among the emerging leaders of the region. These weaknesses will be addressed throughout the project”.

This project comes as WYA Middle East continues to register unprecedented growth. Young people in the region are eager to make change and see WYA as a platform to do so. According to Jessica, the region is undergoing “drastic changes, starting from the Arab Spring a few years ago to the uprising of extremist groups today”. Jessica sees WYA Middle East playing a major role in empowering young leaders to “effect change in the civic and democratic life” of the region.