EQWIP HUBs is a global network of youth innovation spaces spanning 18 developing urban centres in 6 developing countries that connect and transform the economic trajectory of youth. EQWIP HUBs provides a platform for youth – especially women – to advance their lives and find meaningful employment through market-driven work skills and entrepreneurship incubators.


Here is how they work.

Skills for Success

There is a growing demand for young people to gain the skills required to become innovative entrepreneurs addressing relevant challenges within their communities. EQWIP HUBs’ training activities will deliver the market-relevant skills and knowledge to youth so that they can be creatively resilient and integrate into the economic and social frameworks of their communities.

Innovation Teams

Skilled and determined young Canadians will be selected for year long positions with the Innovation Teams to support each HUB. Innovation Teams will foster deep cultural exchange, share new perspectives and animate the HUBs with a lively collaborative environment.

Local HUB Network

Each HUB will support a diverse network of organizations that come together to explore localized youth solutions. Young people will be at the centre of the networks work and together they will grow access to the services young people need to launch a business or gain employment.

Boundless Opportunity

The HUBs will be connected across borders, sharing knowledge, successes, and lessons learned with each other and the sector as a whole. Knowledge will be explored and shared widely to change-makers in the youth innovation and employment space through webinars, conferences and engaging digital channels.

Bringing EQWIP HUBS to Life


We saw a demand for more innovative approaches to address youth unemployment and sustainable livelihoods at a global scale, and the conversation began.


Together, we brought our network of global youth and partners together in a series of dynamic conversations about the types of support young people really needed and wanted in their quest to find meaningful employment.


Using design thinking, the Creative Team worked collaboratively through numerous ideas, quickly iterating and testing their solutions with young people, alumni and partners before ultimately landing on the EQWIP HUBs concept.


In 2015, EQWIP HUBs Global Teams of experienced Canadian volunteers commenced their work ‘starting up’ 18 EQWIP HUBs across 6 countries. The program has been designed with ample room for adaptation and iterations as it continues to progress.


A rigorous monitoring system has been designed to collect knowledge about the program and to improve and adapt the activities as it progresses. Continual conversations with youth and program partners will ensure that the program is continuing to serve local needs and market realities.


EQWIP HUBs was developed through creative collaboration with high-impact partners.

Education Development Center, Inc. (EDC)

The EQWIP HUBs initiative will collaborate with EDC to advance the Work Ready Now! curriculum for skills for employment training and will build on their entrepreneurship curriculum to jointly produce a participatory, engaging, dynamic, and demand-driven package for young people interested in starting a business. EDC is a US-registered non-governmental organization established in 1958 that designs, implements, and evaluates programs to improve education, health, and economic opportunity worldwide.

TakingITGlobal (TIG)

TIG is designing and implementing the technology components of the initiative, strengthening engagement potential, supporting knowledge sharing, data collection and the learning outcomes for young people. TIG is one of the world’s leading networks of young people learning about, engaging with, and working towards tackling global challenges. TakingITGlobal empowers youth to understand and act on the world’s greatest challenges.

EQWIP HUBs is generously funded, in-part, by the Government of Canada through Global Affairs Canada.

EQWIP HUBs global impact

Together with Canadian volunteers and global partners, YCI’s EQWIP HUBs project is creating sustainable change.

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