On Tuesday 20 April 2021, the United States House of Representatives passed the Young African Leaders Initiative Act of 2021, H.R. 965, authored by Rep. Karen Bass (D-CA), Chair of the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, and Global Human Rights.
“Already, President Biden has signaled to the world his support for strengthening our partnership with the continent of Africa and the countries there,” said Congressmember Bass. “The Young African Leaders Initiative flourished under President Obama and Vice President Biden. I commend my colleagues for passing this important bill to solidify our embrace of the future of the continent. I look forward to working with my colleagues in the Senate to get this bill to President Biden’s desk.”
The Young African Leaders Initiative Act makes the State Department’s Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI) permanent. The program is the U.S. government’s signature effort to invest in the next generation of African leaders. Nearly 1 in 3 Africans are between the ages of 10 and 24, and approximately 60 percent of Africa’s total population is below the age of 35. YALI was launched in 2010 to support young African leaders as they spur growth and prosperity, strengthen democratic governance, and enhance peace and security across sub-Saharan Africa. Through this initiative, young African leaders are gaining the skills and connections they need to accelerate their own career trajectories and contribute more robustly to their respective countries, the continent, and the world.
Read the introduced text of the bill here.