Yet South Africa remains one of the most unequal countries in the world, and income inequality has been rising continuously for two decades.

The country also faces major social and economic problems including the cost of years of racial discrimination and oppression, high unemployment levels and a fifth of the population living with HIV.

Young people in South Africa
The needs of young people in South Africa are particularly pressing as they face poor access to justice, violence and ill health.

A staggering 56 per cent of young people aged 15 to 24 are unemployed and few businesses are youth-owned.

Our work in South Africa
Having been present in South Africa since 1865, the YMCA has stood with some of the country’s poorest communities as they faced high levels of discrimination and turbulent times.

Y Care International has worked in partnership with the National Council of YMCAs of South Africa to promote youth justice, including by supporting a halfway house and other rehabilitation initiatives for former young offenders; youth-led advocacy on youth justice and youth unemployment; and support for street youth in Durban.

Explore what we do in South Africa