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  • GENDER MINISTRY: How Shs 64bn Transformed 100,000 Youth Livelihoods

GENDER MINISTRY: How Shs 64bn Transformed 100,000 Youth Livelihoods


    By: Kim Aine

  • Feb 6,2017
  • 594 Viewed

Uganda’s vision 2040 recognizes that Uganda has a labour force that is largely under employed or unemployed due to unfitting skills and slow labour absorptive capacity of the economy.

Evidence from UBOS indicates that the unemployment rate for young people aged 15-24 in Uganda stands at 83 percent.

High levels of unemployment and poverty among the youth has led to many youth feeling marginalized and excluded from taking part in the economic development and transformation of the country.

To tackle these problems, the Government of Uganda introduced among other interventions, the Youth Livelihood Programme [YLP].

Background: What YLP is about?

The Youth Livelihood Programme is a Government of Uganda Rolling Programme, targeting the unemployed and poor youth (Persons aged 18-30 years).

The Programme covers all the present 116 districts and 41 municipalities (including Kampala City) in the country. The programme is financed from Government’s own resources.

It has an initial budget of 265b for 5 years. YLP Implementation arrangements Implementation of YLP was preceded with widespread consultations of the youth and several other stakeholders in the country through their leadership.

Once a position was reached a cabinet approval came in on September 4, 2013 and within the same month September 13, 2013 the position to set up the fund was passed by Parliament and launched by the President the following year on January 24, 2014.


The design and implementation of the Programme is based on the Community Demand-driven Development (CDD) model. Under the programme, eligible youth organized through Youth Interest Groups (YIGs) of 10-15 persons and provided with Revolving Funds (Soft Loans-with youth friendly terms) including the following;

  • Zero-interest for the repayments made within the first twelve months and 5% per annum for the repayments made after 12 months;
  • No physical assets/collateral required
  • Flexible repayment period of 1-3 years, depending on the nature of the project
  • Accessible for both existing and new groups; q Formal registration of groups not a pre-condition for access; q No administrative fees levied on any application; and
  • Promotes active participation of the youth at all stages of implementation through the Youth Council Structures.

Programme Development Objective: The programme development objective of YLP is to empower the target youth to harness their socio-economic potential and increase self-employment opportunities and income levels.

Specific Objectives:

To provide marketable vocational skills and tool kits for self-employment and job creation

To provide financial support to enable the youth establish Income Generating Activities (IGAs).

To provide entrepreneurship and life skills as an integral part of their livelihoods.

To provide relevant information for attitudinal change (positive mind set change).

Basic funds access criteria

YLP is accessible to all poor and unemployed youth (persons of 18-30 years) who meet the following basic criteria

Have willingness to work in a group of 10-15 members (at least 30 percent female)

Have a viable group project

Bonafide residents of the area where the application is made from/intended project location

Ugandan nationals

Priority to youth who have not benefited from similar programmes in the past 1-2 years

One beneficiary per household in a single group for purposes of equity

Achievements to date  

Shs 64,478,558,063 Billion disbursed to the Youth Livelihood Programme since 2014

The youth livelihood programme has from its inception to date disbursed over Shs 64 billion to finance 8,963 youth projects created and approved by the district local governments across the country.

This is benefiting 114,471 youth countrywide. Of these, 52 percent (62,637) are male and 45 percent (51, 834) females.

Though the programme was launched in January, disbursement started in May 2014.

This is because of a number of activities that take place before release of funds such as expression of interest by the groups, beneficiary selection, enterprise selection among others.

The first groups to access the funds did so in August 2014. This means no group has utilized YLP funds beyond 3 years.

Below is the table showing the disbursements to-date.




The top beneficiaries are primary to secondary school drop outs who make up 38 percept of those benefitting from the fund.

They are followed by those who completed primary at 22.6%, those who completed O level studies come in at 17.3%, plus single parents stand at 11.8%. Those with no formal education make 8.5%, tertiary institute graduates stand at 6.9%, those who completed A level studies are at 6.7%, persons with disability 2.8% and people with HIV 2.5%.

Note: Tomorrow we’ll look at Youth Empowerment and provision of employment opportunities under YLP  

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