Commonwealth Higher Education Consortium for Youth Work


Youth workers have an essential, but often under-recognised and under-resourced, role in engaging and supporting young people to be positive and productive citizens who contribute to national peace and prosperity. With more than 60% of the population of the Commonwealth aged under 30, the Commonwealth’s investment in the education and training of youth workers has been an important strategy for 40 years.

The Commonwealth Secretariat supports the growth of an enabling environment for young people by supporting the higher level qualifications of youth work through the Commonwealth Higher Education Consortium for Youth Work (CHEC4YW). It fosters the education and training of youth workers through a bachelor’s degree programme made available as an Open Educational Resource (OER) to Higher Education Institutions (HEIs).

The HEIs, as members of the CHEC4YW receive technical support for the optimal delivery of the bachelor’s degree in Youth Work. The degree is delivered mainly through Open and Distance Learning (ODL), ensuring it is inclusive and accessible for all, including in marginalized and remote areas.

The Consortium is led by the Commonwealth Secretariat, the Commonwealth of Learning and the University of the West Indies. It was officially launched at the 9th Commonwealth Youth Ministers Meeting held in Kampala in 2017, by President Museveni.

Currently over fifteen (15) Higher Education Institutions are CHEC4YW members.

The Commonwealth Bachelor’s Degree in Youth Work

Building on the success of the Commonwealth Diploma in Youth Work, the CHEC4YW programme aims to meet the demand for higher level qualifications and expanded career pathways in youth work. Unique in scale and scope, it is directed towards the professional development of youth workers and the empowerment of Commonwealth youth to become confident, productive and responsible citizens.

Through the acquisition of theoretical and practical skills, graduates of a Youth Work degree will be well placed to pursue career pathways in youth work or a range of other sectors in their respective country or abroad. As the youth work sector grows in theory, research and practice, the energy and creativity of youth work degree graduates will be seen across all disciplines.

Who is the Programme for?

The programme is suitable for a range of students, including:

  • Graduates of the Diploma in Youth Work or those with relevant diplomas from other regional and international institutions
  • Experienced and working professionals who do not have a specialised qualification in youth work
  • Secondary school graduates pursuing tertiary study for the first time who wish to pursue a career in the field of youth work

The Consortium collaborates with like minded partners to deliver short courses in Youth Work to enhance youth work practice, support youth work policy and engage youth workers sustainably and globally within a Community of Practice.

The short courses are delivered essentially at the request of Ministries of Youth.

Management & Leadership Skills for Youth Work

Health, Safeguarding & Wellbeing

Loss, Grief & Trauma

Peace, Conflict Resolution & Mediation

To enquire about the Commonwealth Higher Education Consortium for Youth Work, contact us on [email protected]