Mary Robinson Climate Justice Award 2021

mary rob 2020

For the fifth year running, One Young World is teaming up with Mary Robinson to support young leaders behind innovative and impactful climate justice initiatives that are preserving the earth for future generations. 


The impact of climate change is not a distant threat, its effects are being felt right now by millions around the world in the form of rising sea levels, extreme weather systems and devastating droughts. The sorry truth is that those most affected by climate change are those who are least responsible for its causes and least well equipped to withstand its effects. A person living in the US creates 118 times more carbon dioxide emissions than a person living in Nauru but this small Pacific island is one of the nations at risk of disappearing due to rising sea levels. The situation might sound gloomy but the good news is that there are hundreds of thousands of people and organisations working to tackle climate change and address the global imbalance it is creating. This is the climate justice movement and One Young World is proud to be a part of it through the Mary Robinson Climate Justice Award.

About the Award

The Mary Robinson Climate Justice Award was created by One Young World to recognise and support young leaders behind impactful climate justice initiatives that are preserving the earth for future generations. 

The award seeks to:

  • Identify three young leaders at the forefront of impactful climate justice initiatives.
  • Raise awareness of and celebrate their initiatives.
  • Directly support their initiatives with grants of up to £4,000.


Meet the Winners

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Swietenia Puspa Lestari

Swietenia has been developing a waste management system and hiring people who lost their jobs to clear rubbish from reefs across South East Asian countries and recycle what they find. This is in response to the fact that Indonesia's coastal tourism has been severely impacted by COVID-19 and there has been a rise in plastic in the ocean. The Award will support waste management systems, education programmes, and coral and mangrove plantations.

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Amira Odeh

Since the devastating impact that Hurricane Maria left on Puerto Rico in 2017, Amira has been leading vital reforestation projects in Puerto Rico, building fruit tree parks to build communities access nutritious and free fruit all year long. To date, they have built 9 parks so far and they plan to build 15 more. The award will finance  the biodegradable plant pots, the locally produced compost and the locally sourced seeds.


Petronilla Molioo

In Samoa, hand crafted matts have a very high cultural significance, they are used in all types of rituals. Petronilla leads the Fala Masi Revival Project, empowering young mothers with new skills so that they can support their families. The award will support workshops & training for women handweavers, operating a professional handweaver house, engaging community and sourcing the physical resources.

Award Winners receive

  • Access to the One Young World Summit 2021 in Munich
  • Hotel accommodation between 22 - 25 July 2021
  • The cost of travel to and from Munich
  • Catering which includes breakfast, lunch and dinner
  • £4,000 grant funding from One Young World to support their climate justice projects
  • Participation in an exclusive mentorship session with Mary Robinson during the Summit


Support has also been provided to these projects


Emmanuel Niyoyabikoze

Emmanuel, from Burundi, founded Greening Burundi with his initiative of electric tricycles used to transport trees during tree planting activities.


Lalita Purbhoo Junggee

Lalita founded Eco-Hustle in Mauritius for her initiative on upcycling bags and the production of biodegradable sanitary pads.