The History of NYS

in About Us

The NYS was established in 1964 through an Act of Parliament to train the youth in important national matters such as service in the armed forces, national reconstruction programmes and disaster response.

At this time, service in the NYS was compulsory to all Kenyan high school graduates. This compulsory recruitment lasted for a period of about twenty years. In the late 1980’s, however, the recruitment of pre-university students was made voluntary and has remained that way ever since.

The Act that brought life to the NYS has the following goals; to facilitate the provision of work experience for young persons with a view to their employment to encourage participants to develop, a sense of responsibility and of service to the country; and self-respect and respect for authority; to promote among participants, values of discipline, democracy, citizenship and cooperation. The programme trained about 4000 recruits a year and gave them such skills as paramilitary training, secretarial skills, and dressmaking. Thus through the NYS, many young people in Kenya were able to obtain basic life skills such as organization skills, discipline and leadership.

In 2013, the government of Kenya began the restructuring of the NYS in order to effectively execute its mandate. This is in order for the youth to participate actively in the country’s development goals. The new NYS will be launched on the 10th of September 2014.


Biometric Registration of All Community Youth (Cohorts)

Engaged under the NYS Youth Empowerment Programme


The NYS has launched the biometric registration of all Community Youth engaged under the NYS Youth Empowerment Programme. The exercise commenced on Thursday 28th January 2016 from 8:00 am in all 69 Constituencies where the Programme had been running and will continue until completed in the next six days.

With the re-launch of the National Youth Service after 50 years, The service has successfully managed to recruit and train 10,740 young men and women who had their pass-out on 23rd of April 2015.

NYS will soon add Gikomba market to its list of achieved milestones. The famous market known for it affordable second hand clothes and merchandise.

NYS will undertake cleaning in various parts of the market.

The national youth service top 100 officers under the leadership of the Director General Dr. Nelson Githinji this past week held a team building session in Naivasha. 

To the naked eye the rebranding and restructuring of the Kenya National Youth Service may seem new, fresh and exciting. However for those who have closely followed the intricate process that has been the new beginning of NYS it is clear that it has been a very deliberate process and extremely well thought out; resulting in unprecedented results. 

From left at the dais, Dr. Nelson Githnji Dir, General NY, Nairobi Governor Dr. Evans Kidero, H.E Uhuru Kenyatta, Dep, Gov Jonathan Mueke, Devolution C.S Ms. Anne Waiguru, Kiambu Gov. William Kabogo among other stakeholders.


"I joined the National Youth Service in the year 1986 just after I completed my A levels. I believe the discipline and work ethic that was instilled in me is what has led me to become what I am today."
William Samoei Ruto,
Deputy president of the Republic of Kenya