The Commonwealth Youth Programme has been supporting member countries with youth development work for 50 years. In Commonwealth member countries, 2023 is the Year of Youth.
Year of Youth



At the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting 2022, leaders declared 2023 as a year dedicated to youth-led action for sustainable and inclusive development.

We invite young changemakers, civil society and governments to work together towards a renewed vision for the Commonwealth: one that is secure, fair, and sustainable.

Read Year of Youth launch news story

Youth in the Commonwealth

2023 coincides with the 50th anniversary of the Commonwealth Youth Programme – established to deliver support for young people under the age of 30 to reach their full potential.

The Commonwealth’s 56 member countries have a combined population of 2.5 billion people, of which more than 60% are under 30 years of age.

1.5 billion
young people live in the Commonwealth
of the total Commonwealth population
1 in 3
young people aged between 15 and 29

Year of Youth Advisory Committee

An advisory committee guides the implementation of the Year of Youth – making sure young people are given a platform during the series of high-profile youth events due to take place in 2023.



Year of Youth Champions

Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex will act as a Year of Youth Champion, responsible for promoting and raising the profile of issues facing young people in the Commonwealth.

Year of Youth Champions will echo the Commonwealth Secretariat’s call for stakeholders at all levels to renew and strengthen their commitment to youth engagement and empowerment.


Schedule of events

Join us in 2023 for a series of youth-focused Commonwealth events designed to bring together young people, changemakers and governments, put youth issues at the centre of the global agenda, and empower participants and observers to advocate for changes that improve the lives of under-30s across the 56 member countries.

Year round activities

  • Marlborough Dialogues between young people and Commonwealth leaders
  • All You Need is a Ball and Football For Good, Catalyst in Communities and Street Soccer Foundation, UK
  • Simplilearn Digital Scholarships
  • Celebration of Youth through Arts
  • Documentary Filmmaking
  • March – September: Commonwealth Music Relay, The Commonwealth Resounds


6-17 Commonwealth Youth Leaders Summit, Commonwealth Youth Council
9 Launch of the Young Correspondents Network new website (virtual)
12-19 Commonwealth Week 2023: “Forging Peaceful and Sustainable Common Futures”
13 Commonwealth Day Service, Royal Commonwealth Society
TBC Announcement of Commonwealth Youth Award Finalists 
13 Song Premier and Launch of Commonwealth Music Relay, The Commonwealth Resounds
15 Commonwealth Foreign Affairs Ministers Meeting
15 Democracy Today in the Commonwealth: Enhancing Youth Political Participation in Governance Dialogue between Commonwealth Youth Leaders and Foreign Ministers
27-31 Roundtables on Higher Education, India , Association of Commonwealth Universities with Christ University Bengaluru, Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Amity University Noida
TBC Celebration of 10th Anniversary of Commonwealth Charter
TBC Film Screening: The Migration Blanket, ARTconnects


1 Capacity Building Workshops: Making the UN Human Rights Mechanisms Work for Youth, Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative
4 Youth-led Commonwealth Debate on Sports, Mental Health and Climate Change with University of Edinburgh


7-11 Commonwealth Youth and Students Summit for African Region, Nigeria, Commonwealth Students Association, Commonwealth Youth Council and Pan-African Youth Union
TBC Launch of Celebration of Youth and Youth Work, Catalyst in Communities


7-10 Education World Forum hosted by UK Government and British Council
TBC Exhibition Cricket Match, Pakistan, Zalmi Foundation


TBC Commonwealth Youth Awards Ceremony
10-12 Commonwealth Global Youth Work Conference, National Youth Agency, UK
26-28 Youth Engagement Forum on implementation of climate projects, NDC Partnership
TBC Establishment of a National Network of Youth with Disabilities by Sri Lanka Foundation for the Rehabilitation of the Disabled


4-11 Commonwealth Youth Games, Trinidad and Tobago, Commonwealth Games Federation
4-11 Athlete Impact Labs: Learning about the rights of young people in sport, UNICEF UK
8 SafeSport Day 2023: The Voice of Youth, UNICEF UK and International Safeguards for Children in Sports
12 International Youth Day
TBC 50th Anniversary of the Commonwealth Youth Programme


TBC Splendours Celebration, Commonwealth Girls Education Fund


TBC Opening of [email protected] Virtual Reality Exhibition


TBC 10th Anniversary of the Commonwealth Youth Council
TBC Commonwealth Youth Work Week
TBC 24 HRs of Football: All You Need is a Ball Celebration of Youth, Catalyst in Communities and Street Soccer Foundation, UK


TBC Year of Youth Finale Event


Past events


Commonwealth Music Relay Songwriting Workshop, The Commonwealth Resounds
12-15 Caribbean Youth Leaders’ Summit, Trinidad and Tobago, Caribbean Regional Youth Council
30 Launch of the Year of Youth 2023: Read the news story and re-watch the livestream


6 Malaysia Youth Work Graduation Ceremony, Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM): Read the news story
6 Connect and Collaborate Event for new Commonwealth Scholars, Commonwealth Scholarship Commission UK
13 - 17 Interchange 23 Virtual Conference for Commonwealth Scholars and Alumni, Commonwealth Scholarship Commission UK
27 Webinar: Co-creating futures with young people - from intent to action


2-4 Youth Development Work, Jamaica Professional Youth Workers Association
2-4 Golden Jubilee International Conference on “Augmenting Legal Education through Technology: Issues and Challenges", The Commonwealth Legal Education Association (CLEA)
4 Commonwealth Youth Townhall: Climate and Sustainability


See our full events calendar

Get involved

The Year of Youth 2023 provides an opportunity for all stakeholders at all levels to renew and strengthen their commitment to youth engagement and empowerment.

If your organisation would like to propose a Year of Youth activity and collaborate with the Commonwealth Secretariat, please complete an Expression of Interest form.

To spread the word about #YearofYouth on social media please use our social media toolkit below.



Other ways to get involved

Commonwealth Youth Clubs

Set up a Commonwealth Youth Clubs called the Fifth Space, in a school or in your community. These spaces focus on self-transformation of youth as well as transforming society through youth development, leadership skills and informed stances on social issues.

Download the manual

Commonwealth Youth Network

Join a Commonwealth Youth Network. The Commonwealth has 13 youth networks covering all the key aspects of development and democracy in the Commonwealth.

Fill in an interest form

Commonwealth Professional Association

Join a Commonwealth Professional Association or Society. The Commonwealth is supported by a network of more than 80 accredited organisations working in specialist areas from education to urban planning.

Learn more

Contact us 

  • Youth Division | +44 20 7747 6462
  • Follow #CommonwealthYouth on Twitter and Facebook