What is YALI? Watch this video to find out.

President Obama at lectern, young Africans seated behind him (State Dept./D.A. Peterson)
The president launched YALI to support young Africans who start businesses and lead in their communities and professions. (State Dept./D.A. Peterson)

The Young African Leaders Initiative, or YALI, is not just a fellowship, or an online community, or a place to go for regional leadership training. YALI is all three!

  • Launched in 2014, the Mandela Washington Fellowship is YALI’s flagship program. It brings up to 1,000 African civic, business and community leaders aged 25–35 for six weeks of academic coursework, leadership training and networking at U.S. universities.
  • Through the 250,000-member YALI Network, young Africans can connect with other leaders in their community, access free online courses in topics ranging from climate change to entrepreneurship to human rights, and receive invitations to special events.
  • The four YALI Regional Leadership Centers — in Kenya, South Africa, Senegal and Ghana  — train young leaders in leadership, entrepreneurship and professional development. They also provide a great place to network.

What is YALI? As one member explains in the video, it is “a group of young African people with the same goals and the same struggles, the same dynamic problems, trying to find solutions across the African continent.”

Whatever part of YALI attracts your interest, you can be sure that by joining you’ll become part of something bigger!

After you have watched the video, learn more about each of these programs by visiting YALI online.