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Call for Applications: The Challenge Fund for Youth Employment 2022

Applications are now open for The Challenge Fund for Youth Employment 2022. Here’s how to apply:

Application Deadline:  7 November 2022.

CFYE  aims to co-invest in innovative, private sector-led partnerships that aim to address the youth unemployment challenge by creating, matching, and improving jobs for youth, especially women.

CFYE’s second Call for Solutions in Nigeria will focus on expanding on the work currently being done by existing partners in the country by supporting scalable private sector led initiatives that can create employment opportunities for youth, particularly those in rural areas with lower levels of education and women. In particular, we are seeking:

  • Business models that have been piloted, have proven concepts and are looking to scale.
  • Innovative models that aim to address systemic bottlenecks and bring about improvement to whole ecosystems.
Eligibility Requirements

The following eligibility criteria will apply: 

1. Principles: Should be able to adhere to CFYE’s guiding principles & priorities.

2. Exclusion Criteria: The project and organizations involved in delivering the project must pass the FMO exclusion criteria.

3. Applicant Eligibility:

  • CYFE strongly invite applications from private sector companies, including business accelerators and impact investors, as we believe that private sector involvement is the most effective way to develop and test market-based solutions that respond to the challenge of youth employment.
  • CYFE actively welcome partnerships or consortium responses to this challenge.
  • Non-profit entities are also welcome to apply, but they must apply in consortium with a private-sector partner with confirmed labour demand as the lead applicant.
  • We strongly prefer to work with fast-growing small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The applicant needs to be in their scale up or growth stage. Activities presented in the projects/solutions need to be tested concepts

4. Local Presence: The lead organization or at least one of the consortium partners, has a local operating presence in the country.

5. Job Type: Jobs may focus on waged employment, dependent self-employment or self-employment. The jobs created, matched or improved must be for youth aged 18-35 years. The proposal must demonstrate that the aspirations and requirements of youth have been taken into consideration in the design of the concept.

6. Decency of Jobs: For jobs to qualify as “decent”, basic requirements include an average monthly income of the minimum wage requirement of N30,000/ month. Jobs should be maintained for at least 6 months and should be in compliance with the labour laws of Nigeria.

7. Total Targets:

  • The minimum employment impact per project will be 1000 jobs within the project timeframe which is a maximum of 2 years.
  • The project must meet the minimum eligibility criteria for job targets through a combination of CFYE categories: create, match or improve.
  • There should be a clear Pathway to Employment in the project approach. CFYE will not support training-only projects.
  • Employment creation, matching or improvement (of jobs) must be a direct outcome of the project
  • Projects need to be focused on either tech-enabled jobs or jobs for women.

8. Women Targets: Of the total youth employment created, matched, or improved;

  1. Window 1: at least a third (33.3%) should be for women. However, larger beneficiary targets will be regarded favorably.
  2. Window 2: 100% should be for women

9. Leverage & CFYE Contribution: The applicant’s co-investment must be at least equal to the contribution requested by CFYE. The minimum CFYE co-investment is € 200.000. Sources of co-funding have to be approved based on the guidance provided​​.


  1. Opening: The Nigeria Call for Solutions launched on 30 September 2022.
  2. Webinar: CYFE will host a webinar to formally launch the Call for Solutions in the 2nd week of October 2022. An announcement with registration details will be made available on this page & sent to those who fill in the stay informed form below. The webinar will be recorded, and the recording will be published on this page soon after the webinar.
  3. Deadline: CYFE expect all Concept Notes to be submitted by 7 November 2022.

CFYE is calling for innovative and demand-driven projects from either private sector organizations or private sector-led consortia that will maximize employment opportunities for youth (especially women) under two thematic windows.

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