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Bhutan Youth Development Fund

Since 1999, as the country’s first formal NGO and as among the first Civil Society Organizations registered under the Civil Society Organization Act of Bhutan in 2010, the Bhutan Youth Development Fund has been a leading advocate for youth and promoting the engagement of civil society towards youth causes through support from international development assistance agencies. The YDF utilizes a cross-sectoral, integrated development approach to project implementation and grant management, working with development partners, civil society partners, government stakeholders, community stakeholders, and private sector actors to develop and sustain programmes that work for beneficiaries and society at large. YDF has channeled grant funding to grassroots youth groups and CSOs, as well as, used its flagship programs to empower disadvantaged youth across Bhutan. Partners include UNICEF, UNDP, Save the Children, Helvetas, Government of India, World Wildlife Fund, SNV, Austrian Development Cooperation Agency, Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, Aide Et Action International, The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tubercolosis, and Malaria, MasterCard Foundation, International Youth Foundation, and more.

Date of Establishment:

16-Jun, 1999

Purpose of Organization:

“The Bhutan Youth Development Fund is working to ensure that all youth have equal access to education, meaningful employment and opportunities to develop their potential.”

GEF/SGP involvement:

In 2014, the YDF applied for and was awarded the UNDP GEF SGP grant to launch the Eco-Friendly Initiative, Bhutan’s first waste paper recycling unit producing egg trays. As an innovative social enterprise of the YDF, the Eco-Friendly Initiative in Bjemina, Thimphu is Bhutan’s first ever waste paper recycling unit that produces on average 20,000 egg trays per week from waste materials and employs recovering substance users reintegrate them into society. Income from the unit also supports and sustains the Drug Education and Rehabilitation Services program of the YDF. Producing up to 1.3 million trays per year, the Eco-Friendly Initiative recycles approximately 100 tonnes of waste paper, thus reducing and reusing that much waste annually. According to a study conducted by UNDP Bhutan, it also removes 165 tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2) out of the atmosphere by reducing the use of fossil fuels to transport egg tray imports via truck from India.

The UNDP Bhutan highlighted the Eco-Friendly Initiative during its celebration of World Environment Day. This year, the UNDP in Bhutan nominated the YDF to attend the GEF Expanded Constituency Workshop in Bangkok, Thailand from 29 March, 2016 to 1 April, 2016 and also nominated the YDF’s Eco-Friendly Initiative as a best practices case study under the “Solid Waste Management” category of the GEF Small Grants Program as a part of a publication for the Stockholm Convention in February, 2017. In addition, this year, the YDF again applied for and was awarded the UNDP GEF SGP grant to launch ecotourism activities through the YDF’s My Gakidh Village project starting at the end of 2016. YDF and the UNDP-GEF SGP have established a strong working relationship and have developed a deep involvement in protecting the environment through innovative initiatives, such as the YDF’s Eco-Friendly Initiative.


The YDF My Gakidh Village project promotes environmental conservation by providing alternative economic incentives through nature-based livelihood opportunities, like ecotourism, for youth in over 20 villages. By reducing rural-urban migration, youth remain in their villages as environmental stewards who protect their forests to preserve biodiversity, reduce land degradation, and combat climate change.
The YDF Young Volunteers in Action (Y-VIA) network of over 5,000 young people across Bhutan engage in various environmental conservation activities, including reforestation, waste collection and management, and advocacy for biodiversity preservation.
Countries in which organization is active:
  • Bhutan

Contact Details
Street Address:
Nazhoen Pelri Youth Development Centre, Thimphu, Post Box 255.
Telephone No.:
+975-02-327483 +975-02-329135
Fax Phone:
Organization founded:

NGO Information
Focal Area:
  • Biodiversity
  • Climate Change
  • Others
  • Organization Type:
  • Non-Governmental Organization (NGO)
  • Geographic Scope:
  • National

  • Contact Person
    Ms Dorji Ohm Key Contact Person
    Executive Director

    Contact Person
    Mr Jigme Thinley Key Contact Person
    Director of Finance and Investment

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