Participatory Budgeting Exercise 2023


The Youth Action Challenge (YAC) is a platform for youth to provide solutions that tackle the issues they are concerned about. Teams will receive grants of up to $50,000 to realise these solutions.

This year, in its fourth installment, youths were invited to decide how the National Youth Council (NYC) allocates a portion of the funds that YAC projects receive through a Participatory Budgeting (PB) exercise on 11 Feb.


Snapshots from the Participatory Budgeting Exercise held at Lifelong Learning Institute on 11 February 2023.


More photos from event here

What we heard

The PB exercise involved close to 70 participants and was facilitated by Ho Zhi Hui, YAC alumni and Co-Founder of Skilio, a skills-based hiring community network for Gen Zs based in Southeast Asia.

Each participant was given $30,000 in virtual dollars to allocate to 52 different YAC S4 projects via a digital PB platform. The projects tackled national issues under the themes of Environment and Sustainability, Mental Well-being, Inclusivity and Support for Vulnerable Groups. 

Participants voted in denominations of $1,000 to a minimum of 3 teams and up to a maximum of 30. These were some of the criteria that they were asked to base their votes on:

  • Innovation: How different are they from other projects tackling the same challenge statement?
  • Feasibility: Can the project be easily carried out?
  • Desirability: Does the target group want or need the solution provided?
  • Impact: What difference will this project make in society?
  • Resonance: Does the project appeal to you in any way?

Votes were then aggregated and translated into actual funds that YAC teams will receive to bring their projects to life.

The exercise ended with a review of the final voting results, and participants shared their experience and voting priorities with each other.

Feedback from Participants

Youths shared that: 

  • The exercise opened them up to new perspectives outside of their usual knowledge bubbles and allowed them to recognise that other peers have interests and voting priorities very different from their own.
  • The exercise allowed them to think more deeply about projects and practice prioritising them based on community needs, innovation and feasibility beyond their own personal biases.
  • The exercise allowed them to better understand and appreciate the Government budgetary process as they found it challenging to prioritise needs and resolve trade-offs just between the 51 projects in YAC Season 4 alone. 

Watch this explainer video to learn more about how PB works.

Online PB exercise

You too can have a say on the grants given to YAC teams. Take part in the Online Participatory Budgeting Exercise from now till 25 February 2023, 11:59PM.


Click here to take part!

Check out what happened during the Participatory Budgeting Exercise 2023 and what youths said below!