Announcing One Young World’s first ever Leading Scholars

Since 2010, One Young World has worked to guarantee young people from all 196 countries in the world are represented at OYW Summits, regardless of their ability to pay. To ensure this, fully-funded scholarship places are awarded to outstanding young leaders with a range of backgrounds, skill sets and nationalities. This year, One Young World has launched the flagship 'Leading Scholarships' which for the first time ever are open to every country in the world. Through this new opportunity, One Young World received a staggering 25,000 applications from 190 countries for this scholarship alone.

See the full list of scholars below:

Biao Affo, Togo

Founder, Climate Laboratory TOGO

Currently working as an Analyst for Tony Blair Institute for Global Change in Togo, Biao is involved in supporting the ministry in charge of agriculture for flagships projects “delivery” and engaging key stakeholders for investment promotion and for small agri-producers and entrepreneurs to increase their market access. Following his role organizing national forums on Green Entrepreneurship during Green Business & the Climate Movement, he founded the “Climate Innovation Laboratory Togo” (CIL TOGO), which focuses on eco-entrepreneurship support that aims to increase the levels of impact that young people and women eco-preneurs, and businesses can have on climate change issues. Biao is also one of the 42 Core-drivers for AU-EU Youth Cooperation Hub as Environment Young Expert.

Claudia Taboada, Dominican Republic

Founder & CEO, EducAcción

Due to Claudia’s passion for sustainable development, she founded EducAcción, an organisation dedicated to promoting sustainable tourism, educational experiences and activities focused on learning and engaging with the SDGs. Not satisfied with that, she established INDICES, through which over 200 professionals of the construction and urbanisation have been educated and certified in sustainable practices and “green building”.

Elina Ingelande, Latvia 

Co-Founder & CEO, Learn IT

Elina co-founded Learn IT, the biggest coding school for children in Latvia that teaches the basics of programming for young, curious minds in an engaging and interactive way. During classes, children solve their daily issues with the help of technology, and create games, mobile apps, websites for their business ideas and other projects that are meaningful to them. Besides that they train teachers, educate the public and, in collaboration with IT companies, create various free educational events to spread the word about the importance of digital literacy.

Eugene Amor, Federated States of Micronesia

Economic Advisory, International Monetary Fund

As the youngest person to hold a high level management position in the Micronesian government, Eugene was awarded a placement opportunity to act as an Advisor to the Executive Director of the IMF. His position here and academic prowess has facilitated his activism, where he is an inspiration for many young individuals in his community. Eugene has successfully mobilised over US$200,000 into community development projects such as the revitalisation of the community river in 2017. 

Greta Cola, San Marino

Student, University of Trento

Greta is a fascinated student of law, particularly focused on labour and international cooperation. In addition, she is an engaged alumni of San Marino High School, returning to meet with students and to encourage them to improve the future of the nation through global connectivity. Her primary interests which drive her include fundamental themes such as immigration, international trade, financial markets, and technological innovation in the legal sector and promoting cultural knowledge and diversity. 

Grete Kikas, Estonia

Co-Founder & CEO, Diagnostic Match. 

Combining an educational background from healthcare information technologies and health informatics, Grete seeks to address the HIV crisis in Estonia. Diagnostic Match is a decision-making support platform for primary care providers that automates the process of detecting whether a patient falls into an HIV risk group. The solution consists of a digital decision-making platform that helps to find HIV-positive patients through indicator diseases. She hopes that the same algorithm model can be implemented in other critical areas like Africa and Eastern-Europe.

Halima Miradji, Comoros

Co-Founder & Vice-President, IMARA Comoros

Through her organisation IMARA (I’M A Rad African), Halima has worked to provide a community that educates, empowers and enhances the social and life skills of young individuals. The aim is to create lifelong learning opportunities for the Comorian youth, preparing them for the future workforce and pursue their own passions. The program provides these young people with a voice, and believes that they can have a positive impact on creating a better future. Over five years, Halima has empowered more than 30 young women and men who are now scientists, entrepreneurs, environmentalists and leaders. 

Leonard Wachter, Liechtenstein

Co-President, Friends of Larguta

Friends of Larguta (FoL) operates in pursuit of bringing positive change to a poor and rural area of Romania. Through the organisation of camps in Romania, FoL recruits young volunteers from Liechtenstein and Romania and provides practical outreach work, often in child day-care centres and centres for people with disabilities. The projects offer emergency assistance and help to repair livelihoods damaged by tragedy. The camps take place in cooperation with "YANA", based in Romania, and have been supported by local fundraising initiatives in Liechtenstein. Leonard is also undertaking a student consulting project. He is working alongside the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation to assess how large corporations may have an impact towards creating sustainable practice. 

Jasmine Henry, Marshall Islands

Legal Officer for Coastal Fisheries, Marshall Islands Marine Resources Authority

Alongside her current position as the island’s youngest government attorney, Jasmine has a passion for promoting the roles of women and young people within the business sector. She also worked at the local college to secure grants and partnerships to boost educational opportunities for students at the College of the Marshall Islands. Additionally, she is currently assisting in drafting aquaculture regulations and various endangered species regulations with the Coast Fisheries division of her organisation to more sustainably monitor the nation’s natural resources.

Meshal Alotaibi, Kuwait 

Ambassador, Kuwait Vision 2035 

Meshal has conducted core research on energy conservation and the sustainability of Kuwait.  He seeks to increase climate awareness by promoting a reduction of fossil fuel consumption, lowering the carbon footprint, and using renewable energy. He is responsible for raising awareness of Kuwait 2035 Vision. This is the goal of creating sustainable opportunities for the future and contributing towards the development of the Kuwaiti economy and Sustainable Development Goals. 

Michele Wilma Nyamokami, Gabon

Project Management Intern, DCAF - Sub-Saharan Africa Division

Given her drive and willingness to make a difference, Michele has been engaged at UN level as an intern on two platforms. At UNHCR, she participated in heightening the visibility of the South Sudanese refugee situation across East and Central Africa through the mapping of two strategic documents on partners in the region, and on interagency coordination and media visibility. At the UN Department of Political and Peacebuilding Affairs, she contributed to the drafting of a guidance document on women’s inclusion in peace processes, and she conducted an assessment of UN Missions mandates in CAR and Somalia regarding their mediation processes. Michele is currently interning at DCAF where her results-oriented mindset allowed her to quickly become an integral part of the team.

Miel Sequeira-Holm, Palau

Founder, Pura Vida Palau 

Pura Vida Palau is an all-natural, reef-safe sunscreen that is currently sold in Palau as an alternative to environmentally-damaging, commercial products. With a passion for environmental activism and marine conservation, Miel has also pioneered the ‘Heirs to Our Oceans chapter’ programme in Palau. She has has been noticed by the government, and collaborated alongside members of the congress leading to the passing of laws in Palau to reduce single-use plastic.

Pamela Obama Angue, Equatorial Guinea

Student Mentor, Malabo

Pamela supports volunteers in Malabo by providing assistance to the sick, homeless and disaster victims. The initiative collects funds to bring them clothes, food, sheets and sleeping tents and has impacted more than 500 people. She has also committed to mentoring 5 young girls to become activists, influencing them to have confidence in themselves, overcome disability and to believe in the future. Complimenting this is Pamela’s work with ‘Top-Potential’, an organisation specialising in entrepreneurship and self-marketing. Through her work she has helped many young people and students improve their school performance, attendance and engagement.

Timotej Vitez, Slovenia 

Coordinator, Seeds of Change & Policy Jam

Whilst working in the Government Office for Development and European Cohesion Policy, Timotej coordinated the preparation of the long-term national visions:  ‘Vision of Slovenia 2050’ and ‘Slovenia 2030’. He coordinated projects including “Seeds of Change”, a value-based education program for 5th and 6th grades in primary schools which brings the SDGs into the primary schools’ curriculum. His second initiative, “Policy Jam”, focuses on designing a thinking approach to help solve policy issues for service and software. Policy Jam forums target issues such as hunger and food waste, by encouraging dual-solutions and innovative thinking so that the challenges that are faced today may be resolved simultaneously using design thinking. 

Zahraa Yousif, Bahrain

Student, Vanderbilt University

Having spent five years as a consultant for ventures across the US, Latin America, Middle-East and Europe, Zahraa was selected as one of 10 students to receive the Fulbright Scholarship by the US Department of State and the US Embassy in Bahrain. She hopes that these studies will facilitate a career which contributes to the transformation of entrepreneurial communities, the empowerment of their key players and their overall economic growth.

Sherab Dorji, Bhutan

Founder, Khemdro Dairy

Following his studies in the USA, Sherab returned home to begin an innovative programme to support agriculture in his local community. He founded Khemdro Dairy, a social enterprise that purchases milk at a guaranteed minimum price, directly from potato farmers who keep cattle to support their primary business. This project helps to generate a stable monthly income for farmers who are waiting for the annual harvest of their main cash crop, and encourages sustainable diversification of agriculture.

Imsouchivy Suos, Cambodia 

Deputy Chief, ASEAN Office, Ministry of Commerce

Responsible for Asia-Pacific economic affairs at his current role in ASEAN, Imsouchivy has served as a youth leader in various international programs including SSEAYP and YSEALI. He was a recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize Scholarship in the US and Norway in 2014, and appointed as an Asia-Pacific Youth Consultant for the United Nations Security Council Resolution 2250 in New York in 2017. Since 2017, he has been serving as co-founder and board member of the 2030 Youth Force in Cambodia. 

Serge Eric Adamo Konan, Côte D'Ivoire 

Energy Engineer Intern, European Parliament

Konan began his career in his native country Côte d'Ivoire as an energy engineer where he realised several solar energy projects, then expanded into several other countries such as Benin and Mali. He is one of only 15 people selected by the African Union, who are training in engineering and energy policy at the Pan-African Institute of Water and Energy Sciences in Algeria. After his training, Serge aims to be one of the young African leaders who will help guide the energy policy of the African continent.

Fatoumata Chérif, Guinea

Activist and Blogger 

As a young female in Guinea, Fatoumata is interested in women's rights, the environment, sustainable development and citizenship. She is actively involved in mobilising young people around campaigns with a high transformational impact. She is the founder of the #SelfieDéchets Campaign, which promotes sustainable waste management and environmental preservation. In September 2018, she was selected by the US State Department to participate in the International Visitors Program . She is a recipient of the IFC-CANADA Youth Videograph program awards and the CHANGEMAKERS ASHOKA award for social innovators.

José Daniel Madrigal Cerrato, Honduras

Climate Reality Leader

Following his Scholarship to study an MSc in Urbanisation and Development at LSE, Jose has engaged in the Climate Reality Project, making him one of the few Hondurans to be a Climate Reality Leader. His work involved delivering seminars to over 500 young people regarding the climate crisis. He was selected as the sole representative of Honduras as a Youth Delegate at the Winter UN Youth Assembly in 2018, an event which focused on the environmental dimension of the 2030 agenda and was organised by the Friendship Ambassadors Foundation.

Dickel Dia, Mauritiana

Founder, AFPHY 

After graduating from an academic career studying medicine at the Faculty of Medicine of Casablanca, Morocco and a BA in Modern Languages in Mauritania, Dickel founded AFPHY in 2017. The programme stands for Gender Equality, gathering more than 235 women and girls from four local villages who manufacture clay-based items for eco-building and cultural uses. 

Elena Margineanu, Moldova 

Project Expert, National Environmental Center 

Following her bachelors and PHD degree in Law, Elena undertook a Masters degree in Management (Strategy) at Korea University with Korea Government Scholarship. Whilst at university, she redesigned the course of Environmental Law in order to encompass not only land-related regulations but rather the entire spectrum of environmental domain. In her current role, she has completed Environmental Impact Evaluations for over 90 projects.

Aslanbyek Syerik, Mongolia

Lawyer and Human Rights Activist

Supplementing his role as Legal Counsel for Erdenes Mongol LLC, Aslanbyek participates in the Mentorship program of The Young Professionals’ Group. Recently he worked on a pro-bono project that protects and restores the rights of 1,000 citizens whose rights were violated due to urban planning. He represented them at administrative court and secured a positive ruling in the Supreme Court of Mongolia. 

Regina Soklova, Tajikistan.

Programme Assistant, UNDP in Tajikistan 

Since 2009, Regina has been actively working with NGOs, civil society groups, international organisations and resource centres on the empowerment of youth in rural areas. They promote gender equality by creating educational and employment opportunities for women and girls in rural areas, simultaneously addressing domestic violence issues. 

Kristina Orlova, Turkmenistan 

UN Young Ambassador, Turkmenistan

In her role as UN Young Ambassador representing Turkmenistan, Kristina has developed a personal implementation plan addressing desertification, biodiversity loss, and ecosystems prevention. She also leads the promotional campaign aimed at the collection of dangerous wastes and used materials. Furthermore, Kristina is assisting the “Research-Scientific Center of the Interstate Commission for Sustainable Development” as a senior specialist, developing an environmental program that would work on the Central Asian regional level.

Maria Sofia Mascari Fridella, Uruguay 

Member, Institute of International Public Law

Maria is committed to improving human right’s access for those who are underprivileged. Outside of her career as an academic, Maria is a member of the Institute of International Public Law. Her organisation’s fundamental purpose is to teach, research and promote international public law by centralising the most prominent academics in Uruguay working in human rights and international public law. They consult NGOs, international organisations, legislators and policy-makers. 

Celestino Ximenes, Timor-Leste

Governance Advisor, Hatutan Organisation

With local organisation Hatutan, Celestino has helped marginalised communities in rural, coastal areas of Timor-Leste. Through training, nursing, and reforestation, they bring impact and change to these populations. They educate against nomadic farming, a process which often causes heavy deforestation, so as to help communities maintain their environments. In particular, this protects mangrove trees which are essential to the coastal ecosystems.

Alain Kilajian, Armenia

Sustainability Specialist, International Hydropower Association

Alain is a social environmental scientist and activist, driven to achieve the transition to a low-carbon future. In his current role at the International Hydropower Association, he works directly with governments, financial institutions, NGOs and civil society groups to promote good practice in hydropower – hydropower that provides clean and affordable energy while also benefiting local communities and preserving ecosystems. Most recently, he has led his organisation’s work on the free, prior and informed consent of indigenous peoples. This work aims to safeguard the rights of indigenous groups through good-faith consultation and participatory engagement. 

Martine Irakoze, Burundi

Co-founder, Linda

Martine co-founded Linda, a student-led social enterprise aiming to spark conversations around sexual health-related issues affecting young people in Kenya. Her work was sparked by personal experiences, and a desire to avoid other girls missing out on further education due to a lack of understanding surrounding sexual health rights.

Ezequiel Anibal, Angola

Founder, Sswap

Whilst studying at Chongqing University of Post and Telecommunication (CQUPT) in China, Ezequiel was the General Secretary for the African Students Association. In this capacity, he spearheaded an African culture day to help rebrand Africa’s reputation at the university. The African cultural day received more than 2000 visitors, and changed the perspectives of those who attended, displaying Africa's beautiful kingdoms, landscape, Nobel Peace Prize winners, science and culture. Now as Founder of Sswap, Ezequiel intends to revolutionize the real estate industry for student accommodation in the U.K and rebrand the African agriculture sector.

Nandy Manata Fontes Lima, Cabo Verde

Founder, Eco-Feminism Movement

Nandy recently completed her Master's degree in Environmental Engineering and is a co-founder of the Eco-Feminism movement in Cabo Verde. The movement’s initial programme is a series of monthly talks where specialists from different fields share their expertise regarding gender and environment protection. Building on this, they plan to launch workshops within disadvantaged urban neighborhoods addressing the same topics.

Asma Mohamed Ahmed, Djibouti

Project Officer, Djibouti Chamber of Commerce

Asma is studying a Master’s degree in International Relations & Diplomacy, and now serves as a Project Officer in the Djibouti Chamber of Commerce. She is primarily concerned with gender issues and causes for protecting children.

Zylenna Darson, Suriname

Student, University of Dundee

Zylenna is an HIV/Healthy Lifestyle educatior, teaching peers about the practice of safe sex and the prevention of HIV. She also tackles issues such as prejudice against those living with HIV, and encourages participants to attend test facilities across Suriname. In addition, Zylenna helps to organise healthy lifestyle days where citizens can do several tests such as blood pressure, HIV, Body Mass Index (BMI), breast and uterine cancer. Besides HIV Peer Education, she is also an aspiring Extractives Industry Policy Maker aiming to advocate for the sustainable development of the Mining Industry in Suriname.

Faez Abdulrahman Alsali Al-Amodi, Yemen

Student, UCL

Faez has studied medicine and cardiovascular science in both Cairo and the UK, and therein lies most of his focus. However, he also volunteered in Quito, Ecuador, at a centre which treats people suffering from drug and alcohol addictions. He assisted with medical examinations, organised recreational activities for patients and taught English classes.

Enas Al Aloul, Palestinian Territory

Master’s Student, University of Leeds

An award-winning, cross-culturally trained physician aspiring to become palliative care specialist, Enas is dedicated to improving health service access for patients with end-stage diseases in low-middle-income countries with the aim of providing end of life care and improving their quality of lives.

Salome Chingaira, Zimbabwe

Student, University of Manchester

Salome is a Renewable Energy Engineer, currently studying a Master’s degree in Renewable Energy and Clean Technology. In 2017 Salome raised funds to donate solar lights and sanitary pads for children in rural areas. By end of July 2018, she had donated 60 solar lamps to 3 rural schools partnering with SolarHut Company. The aim of the initiative was to provide affordable and clean energy to teachers and students in rural areas to study longer hours.