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EACEA National Policies Platform: Youthwiki


9. Youth and the World

9.6 Intercontinental youth work and development cooperation

On this page
  1. Intercontinental youth work cooperation
  2. Development cooperation activities

Intercontinental youth work cooperation

The Danish Youth Council (DUF) funds international projects run by Danish children and youth organisations.

One of DUF’s pools is the international pool, financed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Youth organisations can apply for funding for international partnerships in which young people engage in democracy and development cooperation. The international partnerships must be between a DUF member organisation and youth organisations/young people from countries listed on the OECD’s DAC (Development Assistance Committee) list.

In 2015, an effect study of the international pool was conducted. The study was based on qualitative interviews with 150 people from DUF member organisations, partners in developing countries, and the MENA region. Furthermore, 140 people have completed a questionnaire. The study concludes that the international pool creates identifiable changes at individual, organisational, and societal level. The study finds seven effects:

  • Develops unique competences
  • Develops young leaders
  • Attracts and retains volunteers
  • Strengthens an international perspective
  • Creates popular anchoring of developmental aid
  • Develops democratic youth organisations
  • Visualises young people as resources

The DUF programme Dialogue Ambassadors is funded by the Danish–Arab Partnership Programme, financed by the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs. For more information on the Dialogue Ambassadors programme, see section 4.5 and 9.4.

In 2019, DUF facilitated a cross-political networks for young politicians.

In the wake of the Maidan uprising in Kiev in 2013-2014, many political parties surfaced. The cross-political network was established in order for young politicians in Denmark to help young politicians in Ukraine with establishing democratic organisations and creating a constructive dialogue. The network meets twice a year in seminars where participants exchange experience and are trained in dialogue, etc. The approach is peer-to-peer, and the format of the seminars is the training of trainers in order to equip the network members with tools and competences to use in the political parties in their home country. In the period 2011–2018, a Danish–Egypt cross-political network for young politicians existed.


Development cooperation activities

Denmark funds a range of organisations through the Danish developmental aid. The focus is on integrating youth in human rights, the sustainable development goals and development cooperation. As mentioned in section 9.3, a youth package was launched in 2017 that, for instance, includes concrete steps to ensure that youth cuts across Denmark’s other strategic development priorities such as gender equality, education, jobs and entrepreneurship, empowerment, and human rights.


Focus on youth and working with young people is one of the eligibility criteria for strategic partnerships in the Danish development cooperation programme. On this basis, the following five organisations receive funding from Danida for the period 2018-2021:

  • Danish Family Planning Association (Sex og Samfund): works to promote the universal right to decide over one’s own body and sexuality. It is Denmark’s largest non-governmental organisation in the field of sexual and reproductive health and rights, working since 1956.
  • Save the Children Denmark (Red Barnet): works to ensure all children a good life, to strengthen and protect children’s rights. The organisation works in Denmark and 120 other countries.
  • MS ActionAid: works to fight poverty and injustice in the world. Furthermore, the organisation works to strengthen a sustainable global development.
  • Oxfam Ibis: the Danish member of the Oxfam confederation. Oxfam Ibis works to ensure economic justice and inclusive democracies as well as quality public education for all.
  • The organisation Plan Children’s Foundation (PlanBørnefonden) focuses on children’s rights.

All of the above organisations, except Plan Children’s Foundation, offer voluntary work opportunities for young Danes.

Operation Day’s Work (Operation Dagsværk) promotes development cooperation activities among young people. See section 9.4

NGOs and youth organisations in Denmark are the main arenas where young people participate in issues that are directly or indirectly related to global issues. Youth organisations often address global issues such as sustainable development, development cooperation, environmental issues, and human rights. Youth organisations in Denmark may apply for public funding as described in section 2.1.