August 2020: Ambassadors of the Month

One Young World Ambassadors are leading projects in every country of the world, creating substantial social impact across all 17 Sustainable Development Goals. Every month our Coordinating Ambassadors select someone from their region who has created significant social impact locally, regionally or even worldwide. We are delighted to feature a selection of these exceptional young leaders below. If you would like to be considered, please reach out directly to your Coordinating Ambassador. Unsure who is your Coordinating Ambassador? See the breakdown of countries here.

Irina Fedorenko, United Kingdom - β-Earth / Kindness Collective

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Irina has a leading role in two innovative initiatives that are tackling the climate crisis, both founded in 2019. The first, β-Earth, Irina co-founded to solve global challenges from a local perspective. By understanding a locality’s social, cultural, technological, economic, environmental, and political challenges, the organisation can identify opportunities for long-term sustainable impact. Beta Earth works to improve people's lives by advising to social enterprises to create and market sustainable products and drive large-scale tree planting through the use of technology.

Kindness Collective promotes ethically-sourced natural detergent made from soapnuts, special fruits with natural cleaning and healing properties, that are organically grown by local communities in the Himalayas. The company works with women cooperatives to create laundry and household cleaning solutions that are tough on stains, but kind to skin, clothes, and the environment. While supporting over 200 women in India, the company provides safe solutions to customers in the UK.

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Joseph Dusabe, Kenya - Itetero Iwacu Organization

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Joseph is the Co-Founder and CEO of Itetero Iwacu Organization, a non-profit which is aiming to improve the nutrition and education for young children and marginalised communities in Rwanda. This is achieved through nutritional education, awareness campaigns on the causes of non-communicable diseases, and improving primary education access for young children.

Joseph and the team have created two Itetero Bright Academy schools, educating more than 313 children at the moment. In these schools, they have already inaugurated a school feeding programme for nursery children in both schools to tackle malnutrition. Through the Smile Africa TV channel, the team have broadcast inspirational stories of the exceptional students, two of whom have been given fully-funded scholarships to learn in top companies in Kigali. There has also been almost unanimous improvements in healthy eating amongst the students, and malnutrition and poor sanitation rates have dropped from 35% to only 7%.

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Fernanda Saturni, Brazil - The Good Growth Plan

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As part of Young Syngenta Professionals, Fernanda attended the One Young World Summit 2019 and was inspired to further push Sustainable Agriculture was inserted in the youth agenda for sustainability and ensure it was a more focused upon challenge in the One Young World Community.

The Good Growth Plan is centred around four primary goals: accelerate innovation for farmers and nature, strive for carbon-neutral agriculture, help people stay safe and healthy, and partner for impact. As coordinator of The Good Growth Plan initiatives in Brazil, Fernanda has been dedicated to projects that seek to combine environmental conservation, social welfare and food production. One example is Nucoffee Sustentia, a programme to support coffee smallholders to obtain socio-environmental certification and access to sustainable markets. Fernanda also moderated a session on the combination of conservation and sustainable agriculture as part of the OYW Brazil Caucus 2020.

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Isaac Brenya, Ghana - Ecovon

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Isaac is a green entrepreneur, CEO and Co-Founder of a start-up in Ghana which aims to create a new wood industry in Ghana and beyond. This serves the dual purpose of generating jobs for poor communities in rural and urban Ghana, and protecting valuable forests from deforestation.

It does so by using coconut waste to produce cheap alternative building materials for low-income earners and poor rural farmers. This generates wealth and employment for individuals at the initial stages of the value chain, mostly youth and women, who collect, sort and clean coconut husk and sugarcane bagasse for production. By the third year of operation, Ecovon aims to create 100 direct and over 500 indirect jobs. Over these three years, the organisation hopes to withdraw over 2 million kilograms of coconut husk and bagasse from the environment and use them to manufacture fibreboards and save an estimated 500 acres of forest. Coconut husk and sugarcane bagasse recycling also saves 2.5 kg CO2/kg coconut husk and bagasse hence they will be preventing 2,500 tonnes of CO2 emissions.

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Vincent Egunlae, United Kingdom - Generate: Promoting Decent Work and Economic Growth

Vincent is an associate Auditor at Grant Thornton UK LLP and member of One Young World’s FinBiz Task Force, a collective of Financial professionals aiming to harness their expertise and industry to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030. Vincent has co-founded a brand new initiative with the grand aim of contributing to inclusive and sustainable economic growth, by targeting young adults otherwise ignored by the system, placing them on 'school leaver' programmes in professional services firms throughout the UK.

The programme will take individuals in low-income employment and place them into professional services firms on a competitive salary and on a course to learn a professional qualification. Despite progress being interrupted by the Covid-19 pandemic, Vincent and the team have established a foundation for the programme by engaging with key stakeholders at Grant Thornton UK LLP and other like-minded companies in the industry. This will also diversify and deepen the talent pool of participant organisations.

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Carlos Eduardo Vargas, Venezuela - 1001 Ideas

Carlos attended the One Young World Summit in 2015, the same year he and his two Co-Founders conceived of his enterprise. He is the Co-Founder and President of said enterprise, 1001 Ideas, an innovative organisation trying to create innovative societies in its image. It does so by connecting young people to experiment, learn and invent solutions in the area of sustainable development and citizenship. Through this, the organisation incubates social enterprises to tackle the most pressing local and global issues.

Carlos also leads on two other primary projects, IPI Agency and Cultura Lírica. The former runs regional forums in alliance with the OAS, publishes several public innovation reports, hosts a podcast, and organises regional hackathons. Meanwhile, Cultura Lírica fosters social impact through the arts by running a training program for young rappers and freestylers, organising a citizen-based cultural festival, and producing purpose-led music and videos.

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Nuriye Budakoğlu, Turkey - Less for Live

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With a collective of fellow employees at Barry Callebaut Turkey, Nuriye has a new initiative Less for Live, with the motto of "Infinity of Sustainability''. The team has started to implement the “5R” rule in their lives: Refusing to consume single-use products; Reducing the use of harmful, wasteful, and non-recyclable products; Reusing items instead of buying new ones; Recycling the waste based on their material; Rotting the organic waste and use them as compost.

The team of 11 employees started the initiative by tracking waste data in the office and factory, and defining “reuse and reduce” action on each site. The recycling system is also under review. The Less for Live team also organise weekly green activities to involve their colleagues and encourage them to lead wasteless lives in their homes. They also created a platform called "Green Talk", where people share their ideas, experiences, suggestions, and conversations about waste and environmental issues.

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Kimron Corion, Grenada - Grenada Tourism Authority / Kimron Corion Digital

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Kimron joined the Grenada Tourism Authority one year ago as the Communications Manager. His team launched the first-ever region-wide campaign #SomethingForEveryone showcasing the diverse opportunities for local, Caribbean tourists.

Since the onset of COVID-19 and the incurred travel restrictions, they launched a new campaign #GrenadaDreaming letting people around the world know that even though they could not travel, they could dream of travelling to Grenada. This was recognised as the top virtual campaign worldwide by RoughGuides.com. As lockdown restrictions loosened, citizens and residents of Grenada were encouraged to explore Grenada and become a tourist on their Island. The team launched the campaign #ParadiseAtHome to achieve this aim and help to kickstart the local economy. Now, as restricted commercial, international traffic is permitted, Kimron launched his newest campaign on August 5th, Pure Grenada “Just For You”. The “Just For You” campaign aims to showcase Grenada as a safe destination that is ready to receive visitors in a responsible and safe manner, protecting the wellbeing of locals and visitors alike.

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Alexander Lange, Germany - Goodgive

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Inspired by One Young World to start a social enterprise, Alexander co-founded Goodgive in 2019. It aims to make the economy and industry more inclusive and sustainable, by employing people with disabilities to produce reusable gift packaging from organic fabrics. This sustainable and ethical production is guaranteed in various production sites around Germany which operate under fair conditions. The workshops are designed for people with disabilities, and delivery routes are kept short to minimise environmental consequences.

During the pandemic, Goodgive has produced and sold over 2000 masks in Germany, and donated 1500 masks to Kibera in Kenya. These donations are distributed to vulnerable people in marginalised communities, prioritising children and women. The organisation partners with the NGO "Amani Kibera" to complete this initiative.

This month, the team are raising funds to produce 10,000 sustainable gift wrappings, which you can support via the link below:

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Kevin Yu, Canada - Supporting Crisis in Yemen

Kevin is a Senior Customer Representative at Scotiabank, but in joining the One Young World community, has connected with Sahar Mackawi, a fellow One Young World Ambassador, and is supporting her fundraising and awareness campaign to secure support for humanitarian relief projects in Yemen.

This initiative involves spreading the word about the significant humanitarian crisis in Yemen, and directing attention and funding towards a fundraising page linked below. The aim of the project is to provide as many vulnerable people in Yemen with the basic essentials needed to survive these challenging times which show little sign of respite.

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Vindhya Vatsyayan, India - Nada India Foundation

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Vindhya is a public health professional who works for the Clinton Health Access Initiative. She is also a Health Advocate, working for the Nada India Foundation, and while attending the One Young World Summit, developed and ultimately implemented a successful campaign on 'Engagement & Training of Young People as Health advocates for Prevention of NCDs'.

In response to the influence of marketing tactics that pressure young people to consume alcohol, tobacco and other risky products which raise vulnerability to non-communicable diseases (NCDs), the campaign aims to ‘nudge’ people towards a more healthy lifestyle. 'My Community and I' training workshops will equip 550 young people (16-30 years), from schools, colleges, people living with NCDs, and NCD caregivers, with the skills to become health advocates and join the ‘Young India Network for Good Health’. These young health advocates will also participate in the Nada India Youth Conclave 2020.

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Dickel Dia, Mauritania - AFPHY

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Dickel has established a wide range of impactful initiatives since attending the One Young World Summit. She launched the D-WIRA project in October 2019, to promote education, self-employment, equal rights, and fight against gender-based violence and discrimination across rural areas, through three educational centres. WAJE was launched in January 2020, to provide a sustainable income to 100 women and their families in rural Mauritania through ecological farming practices using environmentally friendly, innovative technology. WIRA is a social enterprise for women working on artisanal handicraft pottery. Salon International de la Poterie highlights the work of the women who create pottery, and introduces them to a wider market.

On top of all these projects, Dickel has launched and is leading the Fight Co-Vi Initiative when the COVID-19 arrived, an initiative in collaboration with fellow OYW Ambassadors in Mauritania to fight the virus and the “shadow pandemic” of Domestic Abuse. With the use of a grant from One Young World’s Covid Young Leaders Fund, Dickel will coach 10 survivors of domestic abuse in producing soap. After the training they will be paid and given materials to produce 5,000 soaps on the behalf of Fight Co-Vi Initiative within four months. The team will coach 35 victims, 7 women in 5 target localities,facilitating them to found and run their own Solidarity Cooperatives Water Distribution.

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Miguel Angel Castro, Colombia - Yopal Puerta Al Mundo

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Miguel and Karen López, the co-leaders of this project, want to bring conversations of value to the children they are teaching English during the pandemic. They are connecting volunteers from all around the world to share a moment with the children from Casanare Yopal, exchanging culture, and helping to change their mindset, encouraging them to build a better future, and ultimately bringing hope in these difficult times. This is a virtual activity where children between 9 to 13 years old connect via Zoom and they have a free English lesson with an international volunteer. Lessons include a wide mix of subjects, such as learning to prepare a Hot Dog, doing Origami or learning how to sing a rap.

The team has also established a project for adults, where an invited speaker talks about any topic related to the SDG's, after which they set up groups to practice English, connect, and discuss ideas and solutions to the SDGs.

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PJ Mistry, Netherlands - Action Accelerator

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PJ was connected with fellow young leaders Devin Nash, Bradley Heslop and David Spears at the One Young World Summit, and together they conceived the idea for Action Accelerator. Action Accelerator is an initiative which aims to accelerate existing projects to achieve the SDGs by helping them overcome a specific hurdle that is holding them back.

PJ and the team created an annual fast-paced hackathon to pair initiative Founders with others who are passionate about achieving the Global Goals - young and experienced professionals from all over the world. The professionals work with their team over a few hours to overcome their key challenge to take their initiative to the next level. The event is grounded in partnership, and they invite members from like-minded organisations such as One Young World, Alumni of Enactus, Circle of Intrapreneurs, Young Impactmakers, and many more.

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Laura-Maria Tiidla, Estonia - ISCA

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Laura-Maria is a Project Coordinator at the International Sport and Culture Association (ISCA), a global platform open to organisations working within the field of sport for all, recreational sport and physical activity. In the past couple of years the organisation has focused heavily on the integration of refugees through sport, and during 2020 Laura has been coordinating the international Mentoring Programme in this field.

As part of the bigger integration of refugees through sport project, we are building the first international knowledge hub (www.irts.isca.org) and networking platform for the integration of refugees through sport, which is offering in-person and online opportunities to meet, learn, gain recognition from ISCA’s initiatives, and connect with high profile humanitarian organisations. The Mentoring Programme which Laura-Maria heads is searching for 12 mentees who will be matched with a preselected expert from the field for a year-long mentorship, including online courses, theory of change framework, monthly online meetings and 2 offline conferences. This will create networking opportunities in the sector, develop the participant's personal and professional skills and build organisational capacity so that civil society can offer greater opportunities for social inclusion through sport.

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Demetria Chelepy & Katherine O'Regan, Australia - The Youth Network

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The Youth Network was established by previous Westpac Group employees attending One Young World in Zurich 2011, who wanted to bring the enthusiasm and motivation to make a difference back to the employees of the Westpac Group. This developed into an employee action group designed to unite aspiring young people to help them reach their full potential. The Youth Network seeks to create the next generation of young thought leaders on community and sustainability matters, business initiatives, and personal growth and wellbeing.

As Co-Chairs of the group, Demetria and Katherine are leading an active membership base of over 3,500 employees aged 35 and under, who have been provided with a variety of development opportunities over the past 8 years. This includes collectively contributing 1,500+ volunteer hours annually, raising awareness and funds for a variety of causes such as mental health in youth, homelessness and environmental awareness, and running an annual TYN Summit which has seen over 1,000 individuals attend through the years.

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Interested in learning more about Ambassador projects around the world? Check out our Impact page to learn about how young leaders in the One Young World Community are leading the charge towards the UN's Sustainable Development Goals.

Impact at One Young World

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