The potential for youth, women, and girls to be the drivers of Africa’s economy is huge but they, and particularly those from rural communities, are faced with numerous social barriers such as illiteracy, teenage pregnancy, early marriages, high school attrition, high dependency ratio, and socio-cultural prjudices. Significant gender imbalances exist at the individual, household, and community levels. Participation of women in decision-making processes including planning, implementing, monitoring, and evaluation is low. Young people are frequently ‘othered’ in discussions about conflict whereas they can play a very positive role aiding peacebuilding in societies recovering from conflict.  Women and youth are often used as weapons and instruments of war but are seldom involved in making key decisions either due to their lack of economic strength or simply the patriarchal nature of society. Youth that are not gainfully engaged provide cheap energy to fuel armed conflicts while women have often suffered the brunt of violence directly meted against them. ANCHOR contributes to the empowerment of women and youth through:

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