The Ministry of State for Youth Affairs (MOYA) was established on 7th December, 2005 to address youth concerns in the country. This was grounded on the realization that the Government may not achieve the UN Millennium Development Goals without adequately dealing with the many socio-economic challenges facing the Kenyan youth. In May, 2008 the Department of Sports in the then Ministry of Gender, Sports, Culture and Social Services was transferred to the Ministry of State for Youth Affairs forming Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports (MOYAS).
Young people in Kenya today live in complex and challenging times. The political and social turmoil of the 1990s left scars that today are being borne disproportionately by young people. By 2000, Kenya’s economy was at its lowest point since independence, with 56 percent of the population living in poverty and a negative growth rate of 0.2 percent. This economic environment inevitably had a destructive impact on the social fabric of the country. Despite this gloomy picture however, developments in more recent years have given grounds for optimism. One such development has been the creation of a Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports.
Seventy-five percent of Kenya’s population is under 30 years of age. Young people –using the term to include those between 15 and 30 years of age – number 10.8million or about 32 percent of the 2005 population projection. Of these, 57% are female and they form about 60% of the total active labour force in the country. However due to high levels of unemployment, most of them have not been absorbed in the job market.