The Young Men Initiative – A Case Study

The Young Men Initiative (YMI) is a promising, evidence-based strategy for engaging young men throughout the Western Balkans in the promotion of gender equality and the prevention of violence. Pilot activities took place from 2007 to 2010 and reached over 4,000 young men ages 14-18 through educational workshops and campaign activities. The design, implementation and evaluation of the pilot activities were a collaborative effort between local partners in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Serbia, and international partners from Brazil, Northern Ireland and the USA. As one of the first systematic efforts in the region to specifically address young men’s behaviors and vulnerabilities from a gender perspective, YMI has led to positive, evaluated results at various levels and useful considerations for youth programming in the region and elsewhere.