What is NYDA?

Who are we?

The NYDA is a South African-based agency established primarily to address challenges faced by the nation’s youth. The Agency was established by an Act of Parliament (Act 54 of 2008). The institution was established to be a single, unitary structure addressing youth development issues at National, Provincial and Local Government level. The Agency should be seen within the broad context of South Africa’s development dynamics.

The Agency derives its mandate from the legislative frameworks, including the National Youth Development Agency Act, 2008 (Act 54 of 2008) (NYDA Act), the National Development Plan 2030, the National Youth Policy 2030 and the approved Integrated Youth Development Strategy (IYDS 2022/2025). The Agency assumed and improved the operational platform developed by the merger of the National Youth Commission and the Umsobomvu Youth Fund, which rendered the Agency operational with immediate effect. In addition, the staff component of its predecessors was also incorporated into the NYDA. The strategy of the NYDA can be summarized as follows:

- The NYDA Act no 54 of 2008 further mandates the NYDA to develop and implement an Integrated Youth Development Strategy (IYDS) for South Africa and initiate, design, coordinate, evaluate and monitor all programmes that aim to integrate the youth into the economy and society in general. These initiated programmes aim to alleviate poverty, urban and rural development, combating of crime and substance abuse as well as social decay amongst youth. The NYDA lobbied other organs of state to consider national priorities in respect of youth development when planning their activities regarding their implementation of youth development priorities. The NYDA will continue to monitor and evaluate youth development interventions across the board and mobilize youth for active participation in civil society engagements.

The IYDS has been designed as a strategy that any role-player could get involved in at any point in time. The primary role within this strategy is for the NYDA to act as a catalyst. 

The NYDA with the support of the Office of the Presidency, can create the political will and momentum within Government, to allow the Integrated Youth Development Strategy to gain the traction that is required for successful implementation. The opportunity to influence what other Departments are doing in the youth development space, must be driven quite strongly by both the NYDA and the Presidency.

The main aim is to make youth development part and parcel of what other line departments are delivering, to the point where organizational and individual performance agreements include youth development as a clear area of focus. The role is, therefore, to remove barriers to success and to assist with the development and delivery of critical success factors. Our role can broadly be described as to:

  • Provide planning and decision-making information for projects.
  • Coordinate key engagements.
  • Facilitate critical discussions and to ease projects through conceptualization into design and ultimately implementation.
  • Establish key partnerships with private sector organizations at national, provincial and local levels.
  • Monitoring, evaluation and reporting requirements of the liaison function.

What do we do?

The NYDA activities could be summarised as follows:

a) Lobby and advocate for integration and mainstreaming of youth development in all spheres of government, private sector and civil society,

b) Initiate, implement, facilitate and coordinate youth development programmes,

c) Monitor and evaluate youth development interventions across-the-board and, mobilise youth for active participation in civil society engagements.

How we do it

  • A credible, capable, inclusive and activist development agency that is responsive to the plight of South Africa’s youth.
  • To mainstream youth issues into society through stakeholder coordination
  • To facilitate and champion youth development with all sectors of society
  • Integrity
  • Accountability
  • Accessibility
  • Respectful
  • Collaborative
  • Agility

NYDA'S New Focus

The National Youth Development Agency has shifted its primary core business away from Enterprise Finance towards Education and Skills Development. The fundamental change in this area of development is the change from loan provision to grant provision for young entrepreneurs.

The NYDA no longer offers loan finance to young entrepreneurs; the agency provides financial support in the form of micro-finance grants to young entrepreneurs and youth cooperatives.  

The objective of the NYDA Grant Funding is to provide young entrepreneurs with an opportunity to access both the financial and non-financial business development support to establish their survivalist businesses.

The programme focuses on youth entrepreneurs who are just coming into existence and beginning to display signs of future potential but are not yet fully developed. The Grant Funding starts from R1 000 to a maximum of R200 000 for any individual or youth cooperative. For agriculture and technology-related projects, the maximum threshold is R250 000. The NYDA continues with efforts directed at economic participation offering a range of products, programmes and services to young entrepreneurs in need, albeit as a secondary focus.

The new plan of the NYDA therefore focuses on tailor-made interventions for job preparedness and placement, a focus on scholarship provision for youth who excel in schools, the scaling up of the YouthBuild Programme for out-of-school youth, the increase of second chance opportunities for matriculants and the intensification of our highly successful career guidance programme. 

Key Performance Areas

KEY PERFORMANCE AREA 1: Economic Participation

The main goal of the Economic Participation focus is to enhance the contribution of young people in the economy through targeted and integrated programmes. Programmes implemented by the NYDA aim to facilitate and provide employment opportunities for youth in order to improve the inclusion  of young people in the economy, through increased job creation, entrepreneurship and business support, as well as skills development.

Implementation is at the following strategic objectives:

  • To provide socio-economic empowerment interventions and support for young people in South Africa
  • To provide increased universal access to young people

KEY PERFORMANCE AREA 2: Education and Skills Development

The main goal of the Education and Skills Development programme is to promote, facilitate and provide education and skills development opportunities that enhance the socio-economic well-being of young people through facilitating education opportunities, community participation and service activities geared towards fostering patriotism. 

The aim is to improve access to quality education, facilitate and implement skills development programmes, offer scholarships assistance and encourage young people to participate in social cohesion and nation building activities. 

Implementation is at the following strategic objectives:

  • To facilitate and implement skills programmes
  • To facilitate and implement education opportunities in order to improve the quality education attainment for the youth
  • To engage young people in service activities geared towards fostering patriotism, social cohesion and nation building.

KEY PERFORMANCE AREA 3: Research and Policy

The main goal of this key peformance area is to create a body of knowledge and best practice in the youth development sectors and to inform and influence policy development planning and implementation. The fundamental aim of this area is to ensure that knowledge that inform and drive youth development is developed based on facts that are relevant to the developmental needs of the South African youth, as well as giving South Africa a competitive edge.

Implementation is at the following strategic objectives:

  • To create and produce information and knowledge for  better development planning and decision making
  • To lobby key stakeholders to support and implement youth development programmes
  • To mobilise and leverage financial resources from key stakeholders.