Africa has immense potential and is making progress towards achieving the SDGs. With continued efforts through education, healthcare, infrastructure, and innovation, the Africa we envision can indeed become a reality. The African youths are willing to join hands and work towards a brighter future, to see our continent move forward. The Restored Heart Foundation, a youth-led, and youth-focused organization is also at the forefront of this. Through its various programmes, it aims to restore hope to all, especially adolescents and youths. Through programmes, such as the Young Historian Competition, the Teacher Bank Project, and Medial Outreach, which are all closely connected to SDGs 3,4, and 8, RHF contributes its quota to the sustainable development of its host communities and Nation.  

1. SDG 3: Good Health and Well-being: 

The Restored Heart Foundation carries out a quarterly Medical Outreach Programme, with the aim of reaching out to Women, Men, and children in underserved communities who require medical consultation, education, and immediate medical attention. The Restored Heart Foundation does this by carrying out sensitization campaigns to create awareness about the dangers of self-diagnosis and treatment, educating and informing the people of the need to consult properly with a doctor first and get a prescription, instead of self-medicating. People are informed about the dangers of self-medicating and are offered free consultations and(or) even given free drugs. Residents of the host community are sometimes further linked with the primary health care center in that community, where they are encouraged and advised to visit if they have any further needs. This in the long run improves the residents’ trust in the health care system and creates a long-lasting relationship with the health care centres and residents of that community. Today there are several other youth-led and youth-focused organizations making significant impacts to ensure the good health and well-being of the people around them, thereby joining hands to promote the SDG3 in Nigeria and Africa at large. They do so through the following ways; 

  • Health Awareness Campaigns: Nigerian youth are organizing health awareness campaigns, focusing on issues such as malaria prevention, HIV/AIDS education, maternal and child health, and mental health. They conduct workshops, seminars, and community outreach programs to promote good health practices and raise awareness about healthcare services. We can see examples of this through the commemoration of International Health Days, such as medical outreaches carried out on World Hepatitis Day, World Cancer Day, and World Malaria Day etc. 
  • Healthcare Access Initiatives: Youth-led initiatives are working to improve access to healthcare services in underserved areas. They establish mobile clinics, community health centres, and telemedicine platforms to provide essential medical services, especially in remote or marginalised communities. For example, Mobile Health Consult Nigeria. 
  • Health Tech Innovation: Nigerian youth are leveraging technology to develop health solutions. They are creating mobile apps, wearable devices, and digital platforms to facilitate health monitoring, disease management, and remote consultations, thereby increasing access to healthcare and promoting preventive care. 

2. SDG 4: Quality Education: 

The Restored Heart Foundation through the Teacher Bank Project aims to promote quality education for secondary school students in underserved communities. By providing teachers to support schools that do not have enough teachers, especially for the subjects English and Mathematics. Currently, the Restored Heart Foundation Implements TBP in Government Day Secondary School, New Bwari Niger State. RHF has provided 8 teachers to the school in addition to the school’s original number of 6 teachers who serve a population of about 600 students and growing. Most of the communities like New Bwari,  receive less attention from the government. In ensuring that the schools have the adequate number of teachers needed in ratio to the students’ growing population, the Restored Heart Foundation through the Teacher Bank Project also aims to plug into advocating to the government about the need to employ more teachers at GDDS New Bwari and for other schools in that environs even as they continue to support the school with teachers to fill in that gap. The Young Historian Competition also aims to promote quality education in the lines of history and cultural learning. Other African youths and youth-led organizations, just like the Restored Heart Foundation, have found various ways to contribute their quota to promoting quality education in Nigeria and Africa through the following ways; 

  • Education Advocacy: Nigerian youth are advocating for quality education by raising awareness about the importance of education and lobbying for policies that improve education systems. They engage in campaigns, organize conferences, and collaborate with stakeholders to address issues such as access to education, teacher training, and curriculum development. An example is the Malala Fund Nigeria, which advocates for progressive amendments to education legislation. 
  • Skills Development Programs: Youth-led initiatives focus on equipping young Nigerians with skills relevant to the job market. They establish vocational training centres, coding academies, entrepreneurship programs, and mentorship platforms to enhance employability and empower young people with the necessary skills for economic development. An example is the Youth Entrepreneurship Support (YES) Program is the Bank of Industry (BOI) initiative aimed at reducing youth unemployment in Nigeria by building the capacity of the youths through entrepreneurship skills training and funding their business ideas. 
  • Education Infrastructure Enhancement: Nigerian youth are involved in projects that improve education infrastructure, such as building schools, libraries, and computer centres. They collaborate with local communities, NGOs, and government agencies to create conducive learning environments for students in underserved areas. 

3. SDG 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth: 

The Restored Heart Foundation, through its various projects and programmes, supports decent work and economic growth. When individuals have good health and well-being, they can contribute to society’s economy and grow its economy. Employing teachers and supporting the teachers of the Teacher Bank Project promotes decent work for the teachers, ensuring that the students get the quality education that they need, which will enable them to attain their full potential promotes decent work and in the long run economic growth as these young people will become pillars of the society through their future innovations and establishments. Several other Youth initiatives are promoting SDG8 through the following ways; 

  • Entrepreneurship Promotion: Nigerian youth are embracing entrepreneurship to drive economic growth. They establish startups, SMEs, and social enterprises, focusing on sectors such as technology, agriculture, renewable energy, and creative industries. These ventures create employment opportunities, foster innovation, and contribute to the country’s economic development. For example, organizations such as Oxfam who work to combat inequality by supporting women to establish small-scale businesses for their entrepreneurship growth. This further creates employment opportunities that can lead to economic growth. 
  • Skills Training and Job Placement: Youth-led initiatives provide skills training programs, vocational courses, and job placement services to enhance employability. They collaborate with industry partners, NGOs, and government agencies to bridge the skills gap and connect young job seekers with employment opportunities. 
  • Policy Advocacy: Nigerian youth engage in policy advocacy to promote youth-friendly policies that support job creation, entrepreneurship, and economic growth. They collaborate with policymakers, participate in policymaking processes, and advocate for reforms that prioritize youth empowerment and economic opportunities. 

By actively engaging with SDGs 3, 4, and 8, Nigerian youth are driving development by improving health outcomes, enhancing educational opportunities, and fostering economic growth in their communities, societies, and the country. 

The Restored Heart Foundation encourages all youth initiatives contributing to this driving force today. The Africa we envision is in our hands and not too far from us. 

If you are reading this and asking the question, “As an individual how can I start my journey in supporting the Sustainable Development Goals?”, there are different ways in which you can support the SDGs in ensuring growth and development in your community, society or nation at large. You can do so through: 

1. Goal Alignment: As an African youth you can find an initiative to align with. It could be a project or efforts that have specific SDGs that are relevant to your community and countries. For example, goals that focus on quality education, gender equality, affordable and clean energy, sustainable cities and communities, and more. By joining hands in addressing these goals, you are working towards the overall development and well-being of the African continent. 

2. Grassroots Initiatives: Young Africans can become actively involved in grassroots initiatives that directly contribute to the SDGs. For example, initiatives that often involve community engagement, capacity building, and sustainable practices to achieve tangible impact at the local level. Initiatives that involve direct community mobilization which would enable you to have a direct engagement with people at the grassroot level, thereby ensuring that these initiatives are reaching the expected people at the grassroot level. You can volunteer or partner with an organization that is directly involved in implementing projects and programmes at the grassroot level.  

3. Advocacy and Awareness: As youths in Africa, you can raise awareness about the SDGs through various channels, including social media, campaigns, and community events. This way you are educating peers, communities, and policymakers about the importance of the SDGs and encouraging action towards their achievement. By advocating for the goals, you are driving a sense of responsibility and mobilizing support. 

4. Partnerships and Collaboration: Although this is already in action, African youth can continue to form partnerships and collaborate with various stakeholders, including governments, NGOs, businesses, and international organizations, to advance the SDGs. By working together, they leverage expertise, resources, and networks to scale up their impact and implement sustainable solutions more effectively. 

5. Monitoring and Evaluation: African youths can actively monitor the progress towards the SDGs and hold stakeholders accountable. Through utilizing data, research, and technology to track the implementation of the goals, identify gaps, and advocate for evidence-based policies and interventions. By monitoring progress, they contribute to transparent and accountable development processes. 

In summary, by using the SDGs as a guiding framework to drive development in African communities. We can achieve sustainable and inclusive development in Africa by 2030. 


Author   Title   Year of Publication  Page  
United Nations    Africans Youth Renew Commitment to the SDGs  2021   
ESI Africa    Youths in Africa are committed to achieving   the SDGs  2021   
Young African Leaders Initiative   Engaging youth in Sustainable Development Goals   2016   
Edward Mungai  Involving African Youth Towards the Development of SDG  2018   
RHF   The Restored Heart Foundation   2023   
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