Home | 2011 Workshop

Conducting Youth Assessments for Cross-sectoral Programming

August 18, 2009 – 1:30 p.m.

Presenters: Brenda Bell, Education Development Center
David Rosen, Education Development Center
Anita Campion, AZMJ
Moderator:Ron Israel, Education Development Center

In this interactive learning session, presenters offered insights into conducting cross-sectoral youth assessments based on EDC’s experience in Rwanda, Bangladesh, Democratic Republic of Congo, India, and Morocco. Main topics discussed included identifying the best implementers, optimal team composition, and implementation strategies for cross-sectoral projects.

In regard to the selecting the best implementers, the panel felt that an organization with a cross-sectoral commitment to youth was most important. They noted that while some groups or NGOs may have capacity for reaching youth, they may not have the full capability to handle a major contract with USAID; in such an instance, coordinating across sectors may be beneficial to building local capacity. One example focused on an enterprise development program in the DRC that was housed in an office focusing on health issues, working with a nonprofit to build youth contacts and the local department of commerce to find mentors from the private sector.

Regarding team composition, the panel viewed working as a team with USAID as key, but also stressed the importance of an autonomous assessment team. The panel suggested that each team member bring specific technical experience: a generalist team leader, a team member with USAID experience, local expertise, as well as specialists in youth, economic development, and workforce development.

Regarding program implementation, the panel suggested conducting a needs assessment and designing a pilot program to meet those needs. They also recommended a mid-term evaluation with stakeholders such as local government officials, private sector partners, and youth members to capture best practices and lessons learned. Presenters also discussed partnering with NGOs which they see as beneficial because NGOs often have more flexibility to manage this type of program.

Recommendations included focusing on program design and find synergies with private local industry and employment for youth, to provide the necessary training and education. Meta-analysis be also be conducted using the cross-sectoral approach, adding further value to the assessment.

Key take away points of this session included the benefits of coordinating USAID programs across sectors, with NGOs and the private sector, and with foreign ministries. Ongoing engagement and involvement with the Mission is critical to the success of an assessment. It was noted that effective assessments and program examples given by EDC appear to be from less restrained funding, for example not from one Mission, but rather from DG or PEPFAR.

To view the presentations, please click on link below:
EDC : Open

For questions related to the 2009 Education Workshop,
please contact Rebekah Levi at rlevi@jbsinternational.com