Connecting Young African Leaders with the U.S. and One Another

What do you do when nearly 50,000 young Africans apply for 500 spaces in President Obama’s inaugural Washington Fellowship program, the opportunity for young African leaders to learn new skills and build lasting partnerships in the United States?

President Obama announced his answer to this question today:

The Young African Leaders Initiative Network – or YALI Network – is a virtual community that connects young African leaders with resources from the U.S. government and to one another. Thousands of young Africans have already joined the YALI Network. They have participated in virtual programs, signed up for online courses, and are eager to shape Africa’s future.

That’s why President Obama, Secretary Kerry, and the United States are committed to helping them succeed.

With nearly two-thirds of Africa’s total population below the age of 35, it has never been more important to support these young African leaders as they gain the skills and develop the networks to thrive in business, government, and civil society.

Through the YALI Network, the United States can help these young African leaders as they strengthen their democratic institutions, spur their economies, and forge an enduring partnership between Africa and the United States.

To get the latest information about the Network, visit:

Macon Phillips (@Macon44) is Coordinator of the Bureau of International Information Programs at the U.S. Department of State. He previously served as the White House’s Director of Digital Strategy.

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