Youth demographics in the East African Community: A lens on Kenya
17 October 2018


Approximately 17% of the world’s 7.5 billion people live in Africa. About 60% of this population is less than 25 years old. Like the rest of Africa, particularly sub-Saharan Africa, East African Community (EAC) countries – Kenya, Rwanda, Uganda, and Tanzania – are experiencing demographic changes, which are affecting not just their size, but also the age structure and the region’s socio-economic progress.

EAC countries have large youthful populations, which has been identified as a significant challenge for development in the region, as the respective states, and households have to shoulder the responsibility of providing for the basic services and needs of children and youth. This has the effect of limiting their ability to accumulate savings that could be invested for higher productivity and infrastructure development.

The youth population in Kenya is the focus of this photo-story. We draw on the experiences of youth living and working in various parts of urban and peri-urban Nairobi. Their experiences are around four major domains for youth development: health, including access to sexual and reproductive health services; education and skills development, including information technology and communication; employment; as well as migration and urbanisation.

These are their experiences and in their own words: