Today’s 12-24-year olds represent the world’s most promising younger generation. In the years ahead, they will face daunting challenges and extraordinary opportunities. But what direction will their lives take? How can we best support them? Is time running out? These are among the prominent themes explored in this 4th edition of YOUth magazine. To commemorate the International Youth Foundation’s 20th anniversary, this issue draws special attention to those in the corporate, government, and civil society sectors whose efforts on behalf of our young people are making all the difference.

The “Spotlight” takes a hard look at young people’s prospects as they struggle to stay in school, get a job, and make the right choices. What can be done to improve their chances for success? We offer our top ten strategies. In addition, you will read the inspiring and often surprising reflections and insights of 20-year-olds—who have participated in IYF programs worldwideas they talk to us about their lives, concerns, and hopes for the future.

Also in this issue, Jordan’s Minister of Social Development speaks out on the growing role of young people in her country; two World Bank experts in the “Guest Commentary” describe the perils of not addressing the needs and aspirations of today’s youth; and a young Pakistani activist offers his ideas on how to advance peace in his country. The “In Good Company” profile tracks the remarkably productive ten-year alliance between Nokia and IYF. And more! 

YOUth, published annually by the International Youth Foundation, provides a global audience of corporate executives, civil society organizations, governments and youth leaders with news and commentary on what’s happening in positive youth development worldwide.