Sharek Youth Forum was originally launched as an initiative of the United Nations Development Programme/Programme of Assistance to the Palestinian People (UNDP/PAPP) in 1996. The success of the initiative led to its institutionalisation in 2004 as a private, non-partisan, non-profit, non-governmental organisation (NGO).

Since its initiation Sharek has always performed ground work in the West Bank and Gaza and managed to build a broad network with youth from all over the Palestinian territories, as well as different local, national and international stakeholders from the public and private sector. Various programs were conducted in partnerships with ministries such as the Ministry of Labor, Ministry of Education, and the Ministry of Women’s Affairs, in order to connect youth’s interests with governmental institutions and achieve change on a structural level.