IREX joins the Global Opportunity Youth Network

IREX joins the Global Opportunity Youth Network

Photo of diverse youth, 3 males and 5 females; posing for a photo at a youth conference.

IREX is excited to announce that we are joining the Aspen Institute’s Global Opportunity Youth Network (GOYN) as a global partner. GOYN, which is a global initiative, creates sustainable training, employment, and income-earning pathways to positively impact the lives of youth aged 15-29 who are out of school, unemployed, or working in informal jobs. GOYN is co-led by global partners and local community partners; both of whom share a long-term commitment to creating youth economic opportunities in the communities where the youth live. By 2025, GOYN aims to have a network of 30 communities operating in nine countries.  

“Today’s global youth population is the largest in human history. In some regions of the world, it is expected to grow even larger in the coming years,” said IREX President and CEO Kristin Lord. “Though some view large youth populations as a threat, they can be a tremendous source of innovation, energy, and hope, not just in the future but today. Our partnership presents a unique opportunity to invest in a dynamic network of young people who will work for a more just, prosperous, and inclusive world—with youth actively engaged in the decisions that shape their lives.” 

“We believe in the power of young people to shape their own future,” said Jamie McAuliffe, Founding Director, GOYN. “At its core, GOYN is inspired and informed by opportunity youth leaders who are at the heart of our global network. We partner with local and global youth allies to create equitable access to economic opportunity and address the deep-rooted structural barriers that prevent many young people from realizing their potential. This is why I am excited to partner with IREX, an organization that over the last 55 years stands with young people as protagonists who drive positive change in their own lives and in the lives of their peers, communities, nations.” 

Together, IREX and GOYN will build a partnership that amplifies the significant expertise each institution has in multiplying opportunities for young people to secure dignified, quality jobs and self-employment. The partnership will facilitate exchange and learning between young people and youth employment practitioners across the GOYN and IREX global networks. The institutions will work together to create leadership opportunities for youth, such as including young people in research projects focused on economic opportunity, mobilizing resources, and building data collection and synthesis capabilities that can guide investment in workforce development.