Africa represents the world’s youngest region with half of the population in Sub-Saharan Africa being under the age of ten, and the entire continent has a median age of 25 years. The number of young people will continue to grow and is not expected to peak for 20 years. Although better educated than their parents, young men and women are chronically unemployed or in vulnerable work positions. While the majority of young people live in rural areas, these issues have sometimes resulted in large scale migration from rural to urban areas. In forested areas, those who remain are often highly dependent on the forest commons for goods and services as a source of livelihood. This includes forest-based agriculture or agroforestry systems, firewood, collection of non-timber forest products, hunting, and the marketing of other environmental assets. Some have recognized the importance and potential of engaging youth in collective action in the sustainable management of forest commons. They bring energy, enthusiasm, innovative ideas, a long-term perspective, and resilience. However, despite their large numbers and an important stake in the long term sustainable management of forest resources, young men and women are often not included in collective decision-making. Based on field research and a review of the literature, this presentation will review strategies and research needs for increasing the inclusion of youth in collective action in forested areas.