The Women. Peace and Security (WPS) and Youth, Peace and Security (YPS) agendas have evolved in Africa with palpable results including a substantial increase in the quantum and quality of women and youth participation in peace and security issues. While Member States have the primary responsibility to ensure that the global and regional commitments on both the WPS and YPS agendas are implemented and integrated into domestic policies, laws, planning and budget processes, it is also a multi stakeholders’ duty, as duty bearers for ensuring collectively sustainable outcomes.

In addition to government leadership in the implementation of the WPS and YPS agendas, Women civil society, youth networks and community-based grassroots organizations have continued to work to build peace and gender equality in communities, and are vital implementers, monitors and advocates of the WPS and YPS Agendas. Their significant role in the successful implementation of the agenda must not be underestimated; their humanitarian services to vulnerable communities in conflict and post-conflict situations, their invaluable input in peace processes, their mobilization of grassroots participation and consultation during and after the formation of a National Action Plan (NAP) of Resolution 1325, and their watchful eye holding their governments accountable for failed promises, are all key steps in the path to sustainable peace.

Yet despite this incredible amount of work that they continue to do in advancing the WPS and YPS agenda at the grassroot and national levels, civil society organizations (CSOs) often continue to lack visibility, platforms and recognition of their central role in preventing a social fracture and building foundations for restoring confidence and sustaining peace. This is a gap that indeed needs to be redressed, as the WPS and YPS agenda’s dynamism can only be maintained through investing in key stakeholders including Women and youth networks, CSOs and the academia. 

It is against this background that the Political Affairs, Peace and Security Department through its Gender Peace and Security Programme and the Youth for Peace (Africa) Program (Y4P) of the is launching an awards initiative in recognition of and support for the important role civil society plays in implementing the WPS and YPS agenda.  This is line with the African Union’s aspiration to build a people-centered community and deliver the 2063 Agenda for shared prosperity and well-being, for unity and integration, for a continent of free citizens and expanded horizons, where the full potential of women and youth are realized, and with freedom from fear, disease and want.

Selection process

CSOs eligible for this award include:

  • Civil society organisations working on WPS and YPS agenda issues
  • Civil society organisations working on gender related issues
  • Women’s or women-led Networks
  • Youth or youth-led networks
  • Grassroot Organisations
  • Research Institutes/Think-tank working on WPS and YPS

There will be a total of six (6) awardees who have made a substantial contribution in the pursuit of WPS and YPS in their community, country, or region. Applicants should demonstrate outstanding contributions/achievement through projects/activities in the following areas: 

  • Prevention of conflict-related sexual and gender-based violence and the protection of women and youth in conflict situations;
  • Gender-inclusive and transformative conflict-prevention, conflict-resolution and peacebuilding processes;
  • Youth-inclusive and conflict-prevention, conflict-resolution and peacebuilding processes;
  • Strengthening women and youth’s effective and meaningful inclusion in peace processes;
  • Inclusive Peace building including reconciliation, management of natural resources, economic recovery and improved livelihoods, reintegration of warring factions, etc…

Eligible nominees will be assessed on specific criteria, which including the following:

  • Impact: Through collaboration, leadership or innovation, candidates demonstrated tangible achievements in advancing the WPS/YPS agenda. Selected recipients inspired others through courage and commitment.
  • Community: Candidates were active at the community level, and their achievements advanced inclusive peace and security efforts and decision-making processes.

Selection criteria

  1. CSOs must be working on Youth and Women Peace and Security in Africa;
  2. CSOs must be an African Civil Society Organisation;
  3. CSOs must be operating for at least 3 years and be registered in one of the 55 AU Member States;
  4. CSOs must provide financial reports for the past 3 years indicating source of funding;
  5. CSOs must provide evidence of key achievement/concrete projects in implementing activities related to Youth and Women Peace and Security. The CSO should provide evidence of how the project positively impacted positively in the life of women and youth on the ground;
  6. CSOs must not being investigated for fraud, corruption, sexual abuse, sexual exploitation or other wrongdoing.
  7. CSOs must have sufficient capacity to collaborate with the African Union as well as various stakeholders.

Please access the application form here:

Deadline: 18th November, 2022

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