Youth Health Programme

Step Up! Grants

Step Up! - the Young Health Global Grants Programme

Step Up! provides grants of up to US$10,000 to help small, innovative, youth-focused non-profits develop and deliver effective health promotion programmes – with an emphasis on under-resourced and marginalised communities in low- and middle-income countries.

Does your organisation have an innovative and creative approach to improve the health and wellbeing of young people in your community? 

This year, the YHP Step Up! Grants Programme is searching for projects that:

  • Strengthen health systems;
  • Improve equitable access;
  • Develop the next generation of health leaders;
  • and prevent non-communicable diseases (NCDs) among young people.

To further our commitment to gender equity, in 2022 we will award 50% of grants to projects which are women-led (either one person, or a group of people with the majority being female/identifying as female), with a preference for young women leaders (18-35 years old).

Why non-communicable diseases? 

AstraZeneca’s Young Health Programme (YHP) aims to prevent the most common NCDs, such as cancer, diabetes, heart disease, respiratory disease, and mental ill health. It is doing this by addressing the primary risk factors – tobacco use, harmful use of alcohol, physical inactivity, unhealthy diet and exposure to air pollution - that contribute to NCDs. NCDs are the number one cause of death worldwide according to the World Health Organisation, and 70% of premature deaths among adults can be linked to behaviour initiated during adolescence. The YHP is aligned to Sustainable Development Goal 3.4: reducing premature deaths linked to NCDs by one third by 2030 and reflects our commitment to communities. 

The project must also clearly demonstrate how it: 

  • Will improve the knowledge and capacity of future healthcare leaders (under 35 years old) on NCD prevention education. For example, in working with medical students, community health workers, caregivers or young people following a healthcare career pathway.
  • aims to prevent NCDs among young people
  • empowers young healthcare leaders to address the primary risk factors – tobacco use, harmful use of alcohol, physical inactivity, unhealthy diet and exposure to air pollution - that contribute to NCDs
  • is diverse and inclusive
  • is sustainable (can be scaled up or implemented in other communities/settings)
  • is working to improve equitable access
  • strengthens health systems at the local or national level, with a preference for organisations with existing partnerships at the local level (with government, schools, community organisations, companies) to facilitate economic opportunities (such as employment and education prospects) for the young healthcare leaders.

Applicants selected to receive Step Up! Grants will be offered the opportunity to join AstraZeneca’s Young Health Programme (YHP) Alumni Group once they have successfully completed CAF verification. The YHP Alumni Group offers learning and development opportunities and networking between Step Up! Grantees as well as young leaders who have received YHP Scholarships.

In the past, Alumni Members have been offered mini-MBA programmes, opportunities to share their work with global audiences, and masterclasses on fundraising and digital skills to build effective health-promotion programmes.

The YHP is a philanthropic programme focused on disease prevention and healthy lifestyle promotion. It is not related to any AstraZeneca medicines and should not be mentioned in association with any therapy area access programmes or services.

The 2022 Step Up! Grants Programme is currently open. Click here to learn more and apply. The application period will close on 9 June 2022.

Learn more about some of our past recipients

Africa and Middle East

Amman Imman: Water is Life

Community Health Youth Leaders in Schools (Niger)

Breastcare International

Young Ambassadors for Breast Cancer Awareness (YABCA) (Ghana)

Cameroon Baptist Convention Health Services NCD Prevention and Control Program

NCD Young Advocates for Prevention (Cameroon)

Children for Health

Identifying positive health actions and implementing health action plans with young adolescents (Mozambique)


Preventing non-communicable diseases by reducing environmental risk factors (Cameroon)

Federation of Uganda Medical Students’ Associations

Protection of University Students Against Substance Abuse (Uganda)

Health Healing Network

Tobacco Smoke-Free Schools (Burundi)

Innovations for Development

Integrated indoor air quality improvement project (Uganda)

Integrated Community Development Initiative

Sports for Health (Uganda)

Mahidol Public Health Association

Our Views, Our Voices, Our People. (Burkina Faso)

Network for Community Development

Say No to Alcohol Abuse among university students (Uganda)

Non-Communicable Diseases Alliance of Kenya

The Co-Benefit Project -NCDs Youth and Climate Change (Kenya)

Rococo Communication Self Help Group

Building Adaptive Capacity through Sustainable Food, Nutrition, Security and Awareness, Building on Non-Communicable Diseases Among Youths (Kenya)

Royal Health Awareness Society

Generations Protected 'Tahseen’ (Jordan)

She Writes Woman

Safe Pace Nigeria - a community-based mental health youth centre (Nigeria)

South African Depression and Anxiety Group

iKhanda Mandla: Mind Power for Youth (South Africa)

Tanzania Health and Medical Education Foundation

The Ahadi project –Mental Health and Wellbeing (Tanzania)

Uganda Child Cancer Foundation

Strengthening of the 3C Program (Uganda)

U-Tena Youth Organization

The time is now! (Kenya)

Young Ambassadors for Breast Cancer Awareness (YABCA) in Ghana

Youth Vision Society

Training Life Coaches to Encourage Sport and Combat Smoking (Palestine)


Fundación Vive con Bienestar

Bive Live Your 13 Route (Colombia)

Special Olympics Latinoamerica

Unified Generation, Healthy Generation (El Salvador and Mexico)

Valpo Surf Project

A Wave for Change: Surfing for Healthier Lifestyles (Chile)


Evangelical Social Action Forum

Addressing Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) related risk behaviours in young people, in five cities in Kerala (India)

Nada India Foundation

Engagement & Training of Young People as Health advocates for the Prevention of NCDs (India)

Youth Voices Count

Creating Healthier and Inclusive Communities for Young People (Philippines)

Institute of Social Research and Development

Empowering young people for a brighter future (India)

Work for a Better Bangladesh Trust

Encouraging physical activity and combatting air pollution (Bangladesh)

Shohratgarh Environmental Society

Youth-led action to reduce the health impact of air pollution in Lucknow (India)


Top Blokes Foundation

Mentoring Programme (Australia)

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