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South African Youth Leaders Network (SAYLN) believes that the youth are critical, and often neglected, stakeholders in the future of a post-Apartheid society.

Youth therefore have a key role to play in transforming South Africa into the kind of society it could become: one in which people are valued as human beings, welcomed in all their diversity and allowed to play a contributing role in working towards a vision of a better future for themselves and their fellow citizens.

Young people need to be supported to begin to act for themselves and take responsibility for their own lives.

SAYLN’s programmes provide safe spaces for our youth to start this process and our member organisations will be supported to become places where youth can take this process further for themselves.

A culture of competition rather than cooperation persists in many parts of the NPO sector in South Africa: a situation that frustrates donors and, to some extent, communities, and that certainly limits the effectiveness of the sector. SAYLN recognises the need to bring our efforts together for increased impact; and in the process, to strengthen youth-led and/or youth-focused organisations and their practice.


has grown from the Pietermaritzburg Agency for Community Social Action (PACSA) project

“Promotion of New and Existing Initiatives – Youth Work in SA”.

Over the project period from January 2012 until December 2015, PACSA has substantially triggered SAYLN’s founding, including securing implementation of activities and SAYLN’s organisational development.