Youth Leadership Program with Kenya

Due to the ongoing global medical crisis, the U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs has decided to postpone the in-person 2020 Youth Leadership Program with Kenya (slated to take place in April and May of 2020). This decision was made in order to protect the health and safety of our communities, the program participants and our staff.  At this time, we are exploring options for selected American and Kenyan finalists of the 2020 program.

Below you will find general information about the program and the opportunities for participation. We will update this page with relevant program and application dates as soon as they become available, so please check back frequently.

Program description

The Youth Leadership Program with Kenya is an exchange in the United States for Kenyan and American high school students (ages 15-18) and Kenyan adult educators or community leaders. This cultural exchange will take place in Reno, Nevada and Washington, D.C. The primary program themes are civic education, community service, and youth leadership development, with an additional focus on Rule of Law. The program will employ a highly interactive approach both in workshops and in a range of public and community settings.  U.S. participants selected for the program engage in leadership and civic education workshops, community service activities, visits to local schools and community organizations, project planning and development, and local cultural activities alongside their international peers. As a part of the program, participants create action plans that enable them to implement a community service project. This program is fully funded by the U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.

Host a Youth Leadership Program with Kenya participant for 10 days

Bring Kenya to your home for 10 days while you get to know one of the outstanding youth participating in the Youth Leadership Program with Kenya. You do not have to have a child participating in the program to host—in fact you can host without having children in your home at all! This is a great short-term way to learn about different cultures and connect with young leaders.

Hosting for the Youth Leadership Program with Kenya will hopefully take place in the first two weeks in December. You can apply to host today (the application is valid for all of our youth programs) and we will contact you with program dates as soon as they become available.

Please email Program Manager Stacy Kinion at with questions or for hosting details.

Learn more about home hosting 

American youth applicants

We are still looking for American youth to take part in the 2020 Youth Leadership Program with Kenya.  We are hoping that the 2020 program can take place in December 2020. Please email Stacy Kinion at for details on how to apply.

Eligibility requirements:

  • Be currently enrolled at a U.S. high school; 
  • Be a U.S. citizen and reside in the United States;
  • will be 15-18 years old on or before the start date of the 2020 program (in December 2020 – exact date to be announced as soon as possible) 
  • Be able work cooperatively in a team setting and appreciate the opinions of others;
  • Be interested in leadership, have good academic performance, are interested in community service and volunteer activities and program theme;
  • Be able to commit to implementing a post-program community-based project;
  • Have sufficient proficiency in English to participate fully in all exchange activities;
  • Have permission from parent(s) or legal guardian(s) to participate in the entire program;
  • Do not have a family member employed by the Northern Nevada International Center or the U.S. State Department.

We encourage people with disabilities and diverse backgrounds to apply. Opportunities are open to people regardless of their race, color, national origin, sex, religion, socioeconomic status, disability, sexual orientation, or gender identity.

Kenyan applicants

Kenyan youth and adult participants are selected by the U.S. Embassy to Kenya.  Please see their website for details on exchanges

The Youth Leadership Program with Kenya is a program of the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, U.S. Department of State and the United States Embassy Kenya and is coordinated by the Northern Nevada International Center in conjunction with World Learning.