May 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

Maria Alejandra Téllez Correa, Colombia - Climalab

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Climalab is a youth-driven NGO which is dedicated to community engagement in decision-making around climate change. The organisation is running a project led by Maria called “COLEGIOS AL CLIMA CON EL PAÍS”. The primary aims of the project are to provide academic tools on climate action to schools, identify the main sources of environmental damage caused by schools, mitigate said sources, improve the administrative processes in schools to adapt to climate change, update curricular and extra-curricular activities on the environment, and place schools at the forefront of sustainability and climate change education.

To date, the project has run teacher trainings, measured the carbon footprint of a school and drawn up a strategic plan for mitigation, launched an environmental education high school course called “Youth Leadership in Climate Action”, and run various other academic activities. These all increase the status of schools in environmental management, promote science as a subject, and improve the education of the students, and in total over 1,200 have benefited.

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Lezeth Stephanie Garcia, Philippines - Johnson & Johnson

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In her role as a CSR Coordinator for Johnson & Johnson in Manila, Lezeth is leading a project to tackle the current pandemic in the workplace and wider community.

By engaging company employees, collaborating with partner organisations such as World Vision, and connecting with the community, Lezeth has organised vital “Hygiene Demos” for vulnerable children based in schools in Laurel and Batangas. This was a crucial education programme for misinformed children the prevent the spread of the disease. Participants were particularly vulnerable to poor hygiene due to the combination of the Covid-19 pandemic and the Taal Volcano Eruption in January this year.

Selin Bocio Richardson, Dominican Republic - FUMEBO

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FUMEBO’s objective is to provide quality access to healthcare regardless of socioeconomic condition. It visualises a health system that does not measure success by the volume of transactions, but one that provides equitable nutrition and sustainable healthcare for all. In the last 9 years, FUMEBO has served over 70,000 patients without access to primary healthcare, education, medicines, and vaccines.

FUMEBO performs multiple medical missions in the poorest communities in the country. Through community-based learning and awareness programmes, it teaches patients the importance of maintaining good health with education on diet, nutrition and physical activity and the harmful effects of alcohol abuse. FUMEBO understands that by helping children, adolescents, young adults, and pregnant women through the equitable redistribution of health resources to avoid risk factors, we can ensure a healthy new generation that will be able to left behind the growing burden of non-communicable diseases and overcome the obstacles imposed by society. On average, FUMEBO provides primary health care to 7,600 underprivileged patients.

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Angela Edward, USA

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Angela Edward is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, working in the tri-country area with patients over the age of 55, who still live alone despite eligibility to be in nursing homes. In addition to this work, Angela has worked with families facing homelessness, young peoples, persons diagnosed with comorbidities, and with Asian American and Pacific Islander community members. She is also the creator and host of the “For Micronesians by Micronesians” podcast.

During the Covid-19 pandemic and the ensuing lockdown, Angela has worked to ensure that the mental health of these patients is not suffering as a result. She also supports community members and caregivers with mental wellbeing and general support to prevent the spread of the virus and allow her patients to continue to live independently and safely.

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Sergio Menchaca, Mexico - Federacion Universitarios de Sabinas Hidalgo

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Sergio is a Resident in Pulmonology at the Instituto Nacional de Enfermedades Respiratorias. Here he works tirelessly to improve the health of his patients, research respiratory medicine and train new doctors, nurses and other staff. During the Covid-19 pandemic, Sergio has worked on the frontlines, firstly in the emergency department and since in the Intensive Care Unit.

He also worked at the International Federation of Medical Students Association, where he coordinated public health initiatives in Mexico and Latin America reaching over 1,000 in-need people with vital healthcare intervention. As the Founder and President of the Federacion Universitarios de Sabinas Hidalgo, he provides financial aid and scholarships to university students from the north of Nuevo León who are unable to afford a quality education independently.

Marisol Torrez Daza, Bolivia - Peque Innova

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Marisol is the Founder and Director of Peque Innova, a free education program combining areas of Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics (STEAM). The organisation has reached over 5,000 young people in 4 cities across Bolivia, with the purpose of awakening their passion in science. It aims to reduce inequalities in education which arise from socioeconomic factors such as gender, income and ethnicity.

Children who participate, aged between 5 and 12, gain skills to unlock better opportunities in their future, receive leadership training for a different understanding of their reality, and introduce them to a new selection of technologies and interests. Around 90% of the children had never previously had access to lab equipment, and 95% had never had access to a science workshop. Through this, Marisol hopes to produce the next generation of innovators working towards to framework of the Sustainable Development Goals.

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Oluwafunmilayo Oni, Nigeria - Iranwo Foundation

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Iranwo Foundation is a non-profit organization in Nigeria whose aim is to advance the roles and rights of women and girls in Nigeria by providing access to opportunities such as business skills training, funding, and education for women and girls in underserved communities.

The Liberate Project was launched in 2016 to combat poverty faced by women and girls who live in over 10 disadvantaged communities in Nigeria. It has catered to over 2,000 underserved, unemployed women by providing them with vocational and business skills training, and 325 beneficiaries have received interest and collateral-free loans to support their business. This project has also provided 170 out-of-school children with access to quality education, by enrolling them into public schools and providing educational supplies. The women and children supported by this vital project include the most vulnerable in Nigerian society, such as refugees, internally displaced women, victims of domestic violence and abuse, and slum dwellers.

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Naz Kawan, Netherlands - A Beautiful Mess

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A Beautiful Mess aims to run a 100% circular textile factory in the Netherlands, to create jobs for refugees with a tailor background, and in turn minimise the negative environmental impacts of the fashion industry. The team identified a large group of highly skilled refugees without access to the labour market, and the issue that the Dutch population discards around 80 million kilos of textile yearly.

In January 2019, Naz and the team launched the first circular textile factory in the Netherlands. Within only a year, it began collaborating with established fashion brands and businesses. Projects include the production of 490 curtains for a new housing project in Amsterdam, and the production of aprons and bags for Google and Philips. Textile waste is the primary material, rescued from landfill. Additionally, 25 people from a refugee background were given a place in the re-start programme to put their talents into work again and learn the Dutch language, and a further 15 people from the asylum centre were involved in general projects.

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Emma Moore, UK & Australia - Criminologist 

Emma has worked in various roles as a guardian of human rights, as an investigator and coordinator for the Office of the Public Advocate, for the Commission for Children and Young People to protect the rights of children in the state of Victoria, and as founder of an Independent Person programme in Child Protection. Emma now runs her own business in the UK, streamlining civil services to deliver complex projects. Her current role is assisting with Britain’s transition out of the EU, in food imports and exports.

Emma supports the execution of OYW event in London, creating public interest events about the negative impact of fast fashion. She is also the author of the blog Criminologist, making the profession more transparent and understandable, exploring how crime prevention works and how business can address social issues in Australia and beyond.

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Joel Alexander, UK - ReVive Challenge

Over the past couple of months, unemployment rates have rocketed. As a result, the team has decided to set up a pro-bono consulting movement in the EMEA & APAC regions, aimed at SMEs, start-ups, NGOs, and charities. Joel has gathered a team of 20 student consultants from interdisciplinary backgrounds to scout for businesses struggling to navigate a pivot. The consultant team is currently spread across Retail, F&B, Hospitality, Fintech/Finance, Healthcare & Creative spaces.

The team has begun onboarding for four businesses across the UK and India, and is working on leads across Spain, France, and UAE. Official rollout will begin in June. The goal is to scale the movement to a level where large businesses are willing to create small business taskforces within their own companies made up of any idle capacity, to offer pro bono services to others in their ecosystem.

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Bianca Reche, Brazil - Restarting Life after COVID-19

As a professional in the field of Human Resources, Bianca has initiated a project to support people who have lost their jobs as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. In emerging economies such as Brazil, the financial damage is particularly severe, and so Bianca founded an initiative to offer free online support to unemployed people.

Bianca shares advice with the participants on re-imagining their career, their talent, and their potential. She provides tuition on the job market, channels through which to apply for jobs, redesigning and creating attractive CVs, and interview preparation. This is all based in her own professional expertise. However, during the crisis, with low numbers of job opportunities, participants are unlikely to find immediate success in their search. As such, Bianca also offers more holistic self-awareness and wellbeing support in this time of heightened stress.

 

Trevor Schonewille, Canada - Monkiri

Monkiri is a mobile e-learning platform focusing on improving financial literacy and inclusion. It educates users on core financial concepts and provides transparent info on relevant financial service providers and resources. To help with Covid-19, Monkiri has created financial lessons to help people cope with the economic burden created by Covid-19 in Canada. The free mobile app uses a content management system that makes it simple to create, edit and localize lessons. This allows lessons to be delivered anywhere, in all countries, will an easy system to localize the content. Monkiri is sourcing partners to help collate the necessary, local, content. Monkiri has launched in Myanmar and is launching a pilot with content partners in Cambodia and Canada. Having access to formal financial services helps to economically empower people.

The programme aims to reduce additional anxiety that is generated in this difficult time, stemming from financial decisions. To date, over 2000 people have downloaded the app, 900 people have completed at least a financial lesson and at least 250 users have applied for a financial service because of Monkiri.

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