Despite the large proportion of young people in the Nigerian Society, not much space is given to accommodate Youths in the political arena. Rather, they are increasingly being instrumentalised to support political players through political violence. It is important to re-define the Youth behaviour and roles so as to initiate and contribute to positive change in the Nigerian society.
FES Nigeria introduced the Open Minds, Young Voices- Youth Activist Programme. The annual programme provides groups of young, capable and proactive Nigerians with skills, knowledge and moral values that will equip and encourage them to use their future leadership positions to work and advocate for social justice, good governance and a more peaceful Nigeria.
The programme targets youths between 18 and 33 years from all sectors of the society especially from trade unions, civil society organizations, research institutions, educational institutions and the media. Youth that have shown their commitment to representing the common interest of the Nigerian people. Every second weekend they practice and apply acquired life and professional skills in a conducive space that assist them in the pursuit for social justice and good governance. The youths are exposed to nationally and internationally relevant topics while nurturing a culture of discussion and constructive criticism. The participants learn to respect different views and ideologies and thus spearhead the building of a democratic and pluralistic political culture.