Pan-Africa Youth Leadership Program (PAYLP)

Background and Purpose

The U.S. Embassy in Namibia, under the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA)’s Youth Programs Division, is pleased to invite candidate nominations for the 2023 Pan-Africa Youth Leadership Program (PAYLP).

The program supports long-range U.S. foreign policy priorities by offering secondary school youth (ages 15-18) the opportunity to explore themes such as entrepreneurship, civic education, youth leadership, economic development, and respect for diversity.  Through three-week, intensive exchanges in the United States, participants engage in workshops on leadership and service, community site visits related to the program themes and subthemes, interactive training in conflict resolution, presentations, visits to high schools, local cultural activities, and homestays with local American families.

A key component of the program is for participants to develop follow-on community-based projects in their home communities to effect positive change after their return home.

The following are past examples of programs developed by participants upon return to their home countries and they include:

  • A girls empowerment program with a social entrepreneurship aspect built in via beading projects, developed by two Togolese student participants;
  • A program by two other participants who worked with young inmates in a local prison to develop vocational skills to help prepare them for their reintegration into society;
  • And a community library at a local high school, created by a Chadian participant to decrease the school’s high drop-out rate.

We are therefore looking for those students who are likely to come back and apply the skills and knowledge they have acquired to their communities and society.

Other Essential Program Information:

The U.S. Embassy will cover all program costs, including round-trip international travel, alumni activities, lodging, stipends, and accident and sickness and other costs associated with the program.

Candidate Description and Qualifications:

The youth participants should be high school students aged between 15 to 18 years at the start of the exchange who have demonstrated leadership potential through academic work, community involvement, and extracurricular activities. Participants must also have strong English skills.

A successful candidate for this program will:

  1. Be a high school student who is 15, 16, 17, or 18 years of age by the start of the exchange;
  2. Be proficient in English
  3. Attend at least one semester of high school in his/her home country following completion of the program;
  4. Indicate a serious interest in learning about the United States;
  5. Demonstrate strong leadership qualities and potential in his/her school or community;
  6. Have a high level of academic achievement, as indicated by academic grades, awards, and teacher recommendations;
  7. Demonstrate a commitment to community service and extracurricular activities;
  8. Have had little or no prior study or travel experience in the United States or elsewhere outside of their home country;
  9. Be mature, responsible, independent, confident, open-minded, tolerant, thoughtful and inquisitive; and
  10. Be willing and able to fully participate in an intensive program, community service, and active educational travel program during the exchange, as well as in follow-on activities afterward in their home countries.
  11. Be in possession of a valid Namibian passport.


U.S. Embassy’s Public Affairs Section
American Cultural Center, 3rd Floor Sanlam Building
Tell: 061 444900