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Connecting People and Ideas for Integrated Development

Afghan Youth Fellows Aim for Positive Impact

Wolesi Jirga Deputy Secretary General, Alhaj Mohammad Akbar Akramzada handing certificate of completion to Alyas Hameed Munib

Finding an exciting career that can allow one to make a difference in their personal lives and the development of the country, is a dream for many young Afghans. In a country where unemployment is high and instability dictates everyday life. Opportunities for exciting career opportunities are few and far between. For 21-year-old Alyas Hameed Munib, a USAID-supported fellowship program inside Afghanistan’s National Assembly has left him certain that his career path is clear and secured. “My plan is to establish an organisation called Law and Democracy, which will be dedicated to legislative affairs,” he explains. “It will conduct research and work toward the strengthening of rule of law in Afghanistan.”

Alyas, recently graduated from the fellowship program, which is run by the USAID-funded Afghanistan Parliamentary Assistance Project, and takes pride in the skill sets he credits to his participation in the program. “I have learnt and developed the ability to analyze a bill from a political, social and economic perspective, and identify weak points that might need redrafting or repealing,” says the ambitious law graduate.

Participation in the fellowship program has positively impacted Alyas’ life and given him renewed hope and a fiery ambition to contribute towards the improvement of his country. “I will work towards the strengthening of the rule of law and democracy in Afghanistan,” he enthused.

The Afghan Youth Fellows program recently graduated its third class since inception in 2008, with 31 participants officially graduating at a ceremony on 9 November 2010. To date 72 fellows have graduated from the program. The program provides some of Afghanistan’s brightest young recent university graduates with valuable work experience while also channeling their talent towards public service.

As Alyas embarks on his journey through life after what he considers a valuable learning experience, his positive motivation towards public service is only equaled by that of his compatriot youth fellows who are actively seeking work inside the National Assembly, 3 have since secured full-time employment there. “We’ve learnt a lot in this program and can now be of good use inside the parliament, because there’s a real need for university graduates with the right skills,” says fellow Mustafa Mangal.