Youth Empowerment and Development Initiative
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About YEDI

YEDI is a non-profit organization committed to educating, empowering and inspiring the development of individuals and communities, especially children and youth, through effective, innovative, and tried-and-tested development approaches that are relevant for the Nigerian context. It was founded in 2011 to pilot the Grassroot Soccer (GRS) model, a football-for-development programme developed more than 10 years ago in Southern Africa to reduce HIV prevalence rates and stigma. The pilot, which targeted 6 sites (5 schools and a church), was an immediate success, prompting YEDI to expand the programme into other high-need areas.  

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BMZ-Sponsored SKILLZ Girl Project Kicks Off

On May 4, 2018, YEDI launched an adolescent health project for girls - the BMZ SKILLZ Girl Project. Sponsored by the German government’s Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development through StreetFootballWorld, the girls-only project targets over 2,000 girls aged 13 and 19 in Lagos, Abuja, Akwa Ibom and Ogun State and centers on HIV/AIDS prevention, sexuality and life skills and supporting young women and girls to better protect themselves from HIV/AIDS and make self-determined life decisions.

YEDI's Grassroot Soccer Skillz Programmes

YEDI deploys its programmes using in-school, out-of-school and community outreach approaches. The Skillz program that equips children aged 11-19 with important life-skills, malaria and HIV/AIDS education, decision-making skills, how to handle basic life challenges, sexual & reproductive health education, access to free malaria & HIV Testing Services, gender equality training, social & life skills training, substance abuse, etc is currently implemented in over 400 sites in Lagos, Akwa-Ibom, Ogun States and Abuja. The programme which uses soccer and other physical activities to pass the message has benefitted over 110,000 young people in disadvantaged communities in Nigeria, thanks to our Sponsors, partners, and Coaches

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Our Programmes (Skillz Girl)

One of our Skillz-based programmes/curricula is Skillz Girl. This is an evidence-based intervention for girls aged 13-19, educating them on HIV prevention, sexuality and life skills and empowering them with basic information to make healthy choices about their sexual and reproductive health using the game of soccer and other physical activities which help them to build interpersonal relationships, encourage positive self-image, and develop negotiation and leadership skills.

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Our Programmes (Basic Skillz)

Basic Skillz is another of YEDI's programmes. It is a youth-based and evidence-supported interactive HIV and malaria prevention, and life skills curriculum designed for young people between ages 10 and 13.

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Our Programmes (Advanced Skillz)

Advanced Skillz targets Nigerian adolescents aged 13 to16 using soccer, its language, and metaphors and other physical activities to address key behaviours that drive the spread of HIV/AIDS, other STIs as well as malaria education.

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Our Programmes (Skillz Guy)

Skillz Guy is an adopted curriculum for boys aged 13 to 19, tailored to provide information on HIV prevention, Sexual, Reproductive Health, gender inequality issues, substance abuse, and sexual violence.

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YEDI is a Network Member of StreetFootballWorld

“In recognition of its leading work in the field of social change through football,” YEDI was officially admitted into the streetfootballworld network in 2015. Streetfootballworld drives a global network of charitable community organisations that rally behind one common goal: changing the world through football. With headquarters in Berlin, Germany, the network has grown to over 84 organisations in 59 countries of the world. Streetfootballworld exists for one reason only: to harness the power of football for good by using it as a tool to drive social change. As an organisation that utilises football to push overarching goals of improving youth and communities and aiding health, YEDI is happy and proud to be a part of this global network.

Our Programmes (Skillz Holiday Camps)

The Skillz Holiday Camps (SHC) is a 5-day intervention organized during the long holiday, providing a safe space for young people to learn healthy habits, be educated about prevention of HIV/AIDS, and Malaria, an opportunity to acquire soft skills and craft training and life management skills for economic empowerment using football and other physical activities, as well as access to HIV Testing Services.

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Our Programmes (Community Outreaches)

COMMUNITY OUTREACHES - YEDI also empowers and educates young people and communities by providing them with sexual and reproductive health awareness and life skills through innovative and volunteer-based approaches centred around special events like World Malaria Day (commemorated annually on April 25) and World AIDS Day (annually venerated on December 1). YEDI, in collaboration with private and public sector partners, carries out awareness and biomedical services like HIV Testing Services, Malaria testing, and treatment, referrals, etc. during international commemoration days

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Our Core Values

Integrity: We act with honesty, uprightness, transparency, and without compromising the truth; we strive for high moral character in all our actions. 

Innovation: We always evolve new creative ideas that can add value to life and change the world

Excellence: We give our best to the task at hand at all times; with dedication and commitment we put our heart and mind in the work to get the best.

Safety: We create and ensure a safe and trouble-free space and experience for everyone.   

Teamwork: We value cooperation, using our individual skills and providing constructive feedback to get everyone on the same page; we work collaboratively with people and organisations in order to achieve a goal.

Equality: We believe in fairness, objectivity and mutual respect; we have no room for discrimination.

Sacrifice: We take ownership and go the extra mile, placing others before self.

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Our Coaches

Our Coaches/Peer Educators/Volunteers are Nigeria's motivated, empowered youths who are excited to foster change for a stronger Nigeria. Since 2011, YEDI has trained more than 400 Youth Coaches (volunteers) selected for their leadership, knowledge, and ability to mentor and empower youths in their communities. 

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Access to Free Malaria & HIV Testing Services

Not only does YEDI promote youth empowerment in at-risk areas of Nigeria, it also facilitates access to HIV and Malaria testing and treatment at all of its community events, where Nigerians learn that those with HIV/AIDS should not be stigmatized. Our Lagos AIDS Walk, now an annual tradition, has only grown since 2011 in support of those with HIV/AIDS and seeking testing and treatment.

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Countdown to World Malaria Day

YEDI is committed to introducing effective, innovative, and most times, tried-and-tested development approaches that are ready for adaptation in the Nigerian setting. YEDI was founded in 2011 to pilot the Grassroot Soccer (GRS) model, a football-for-development programme developed more than 10 years ago in Southern Africa to reduce HIV prevalence rates and stigma. The pilot, which targeted 6 sites (5 schools and a church), was an immediate success, prompting YEDI to expand into other high-need areas.  The GRS methodology is based on training local young adults as mentors; empowering them to implement the activity-based and sport-themed health education curricula to young people. 



YEDI’s committed development professionals capitalize on proven programs rather than experiment. YEDI generates results through tried and tested approaches that work. YEDI constantly seeks ways to expand its programmes to target more youth and additional challenges they face. Specifically, YEDI’s focus includes: Malaria Education, Sexual & Reproductive Health, HIV Prevention, Adolescent Health, Skills Training. YEDI also organizes health-and-wellness-centered specialized training for organizations tailored to suit the employees’ peculiar needs and work schedules. 


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Young people have since 2011 accessed information to live healthy and make informed decisions with increased knowledge about HIV/AIDS, malaria, sexual/reproductive health.

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Young girls, through sports, accessed quality HIV, sexual and Reproductive Health education and life skills training via the Skillz Girl program

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persons in at-risk communities across our project sites have accessed free HIV testing and counseling services with referals for those found reactive during our World AIDS Day outreaches.


Urban achievers
Pursuing Productive Livelihoods in Nigeria

Globally, research has shown that a young person will be three times more likely to be unemployed than an average adult and predict that if not urgently dealt with, economic protests will worsen. In Nigeria, “Youth unemployment” is one of the biggest economic problems. Youth Empowerment and Development Initiative developed a program “Urban Achievers” aimed at engaging, encouraging and providing necessary skills needed for the job market.

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Grassroot Soccer Nigeria
A Soccer-for-development Initiative

Over 170,000 graduates in more than 600 schools, coached by over 500 trained youth leaders, have improved ability to reduce risks, handle peer pressure, prevent HIV & malaria & other endemic diseases & learn about Sexual and Reproductive Health through increased education about health concerns in their communities. Participants also access free malaria testing & treatment, HIV Counselling & Testing (HCT) & referrals where necessary. 


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