Ambassador Spotlights: May 2022

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.

An Overview of this Month's Featured Projects

5 K

self-care kit downloads

350 K+

people impacted

25 K

litres of rainwater recovered

720

trees planted

$ 1

million+ in energy cost savings

4 K

metric tonnes of CO2 emissions offset

image of Mileidy's project in action
Image of Ricardo's project

Meet the Ambassadors

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United States

Luca Anselmi

Luca leads GE's One Young World initiative, which sends GE delegates to the One Young World Summit every year. GEneration Impact supports social impact organisations to scope out projects which contribute directly to the UN Global Goals for Sustainable Development and match them with pro-bono consulting services from industry partners. The idea of GEneration Impact was born in 2014 when a group of GE employees attended the One Young World Summit that year, and since then it has helped 22 partner organisations in 33 different projects.

 

In 2019, the GEneration Impact team formalised their core operational structure and set goals centred around standardisation and outreach growth. Since then it has successfully scaled its sourcing and resourcing capacity through new projects and managed to increase membership. Recently, GEneration Impact partnered with ChildFund, a non-profit organisation that helps create safe environments for children to thrive, with a website refresh for the Kerjaku project and consulting on their digital programme delivery. GEneration Impact has also worked with Releaf, a Nigerian non-profit working to alleviate poverty and create shared prosperity through industrialising palm oil production, with consulting on optimisation of their palm nut de-shelling process.

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Philippines

Roy Dahildahil

MentalHealthPH is a nonprofit organisation that champions and builds mentally healthy communities. It does this by inspiring and investing in awareness of mental health among the public while empowering and encouraging its members towards mental health support, and collaborating with different sectors for sustainable solutions. Co-founded by Roy, MentalHealthPH sees its mission as promoting and protecting mental health through social media and digital technology. It seeks to accomplish this through three objectives: 1) Support for Self, ensuring that everyone can help themselves and others in their mental health journey, 2) Support for Society, normalising the conversation around mental health and removing stigma, 3) Support for System, collaborating with other sectors in the Philippines to find solutions to the mental health crisis.

MentalHealthPH has developed a number of projects to contribute to the mental health movement in the Philippines. These include #UsapTayo, a regular Twitter-based conversation educating people on the topic, and KapwaMH, a Twitter Chatbot which links people with appropriate mental health support and help. The organisation's self-care kits have more than 5,000 downloads, with plans to print and distribute these kits to geographically isolated and disadvantaged areas with help from MentalHealthPH's partners.

l

Mexico

Luis Rodolfo Nájera Ramírez

Luis is a founding partner and engineering director of the software company Sisvox Soft Mexico and is also a member of the Mexican Olympic Committee of Informatics, which organises the Mexican Olympiad in Informatics. He served as a judge and organiser of the IPN-Mexico International Robotics Cup and has been the Mexican Delegate for a number of international events in entrepreneurial and innovation spaces. He is also the recipient of several prestigious awards, including the Youth Leadership Award, the Youth Awards 2030, 'Voces de América' and the Ibero-American medal in informatics.

The Mexican Olympiad in Informatics (OMI) is a national competition for young people who demonstrate an ability to solve practical problems through logic and computers, with an overarching goal to promote technological development in Mexico. The initiative seeks to find the best programmers in the country to participate in the next International Olympiad in Informatics. In doing so, OMI promotes computer science and informatics to high school students in Mexico, finds and supports talented individuals in these fields, and facilitates technological development and exchange amongst young people. The contest receives more than 200,000 registered participants each year, while Mexico has medalled in the International Informatics Olympiad 26 times. Luis came to One Young World through the Telefonica Movistar digital inclusion scholarship.

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Jamaica

Kemoy Lindsay

School's Challenge Quiz is the biggest and longest-running academic high school competition in the Caribbean region. Each year, 64 schools across Jamaica vie for the title of 'Quiz Champion'. Kemoy works as the head coach of Calabar High School's quiz team, which reached the finals this year for the first time in a decade. Kemoy's role is not only as head coach, he also acts as a mentor to at least 10 teenage boys who are participants in the programme. As a past student of the school, Kemoy has always been keen to give back and play a part in developing young students who are in need of guidance and focus.

Working as a coach and mentor for many years now, several of Kemoy's students have gone on to pursue further studies in fields like law, medicine, engineering, and entrepreneurship. He takes pride in this fact, and also that the young men he works with see him as someone they can approach for advice and guidance without judgement or condemnation. Despite their loss in this year's final, the boys of Calabar High School have grown individually and collectively as a direct result of Kemoy's leadership and role in their lives. A firm believer in the benefits of mentorship, Kemoy encourages all young professionals to look back into their communities and schools for any opportunity to offer mentorship and guidance to the next generation of leaders and change-makers.

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Kiribati

David Kakiakia

ChildFund Kiribati is a non-governmental organisation founded in 2016 to improve the lives of children and families in that country. ChildFund is currently implementing its project called IMPACTS using a holistic approach to ensure that the children and young people in the programme are thriving. ChildFund addresses poor dietary intake, poor parenting practices, unsafe water drinking norms, youth unemployment, lack of household budgeting skills, and many other factors that may stymie children's growth and development. The organisation has implemented household support interventions and built youth learning pathways through its Youth Life Skills programme. David serves as the organisation's Programme Director.

The Life Skills programme is designed to help young people become productive citizens and develop the skills to generate future income, while the Building Block programme is designed for illiterate young people. The organisation's Bridging Course is a partnership with the Kiribati Institute of Technology to provide a pathway for young people who left school early, while this partnership has also expanded to encompass an entrepreneurship programme. ChildFund works with approximately 2800 households in Betio, impacting more than 17000 people. The Youth Life Skills programme has provided learning opportunities to more than 500 youths.

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Azerbaijan

Incha Aliyeva

Beeco is an environmental initiative aiming to increase environmental awareness in Azerbaijan and globally. Founded by Incha Aliyeva in 2019, the organisation has carried out a number of successful projects. These include delivering presentations on environmental issues and climate change to more than 100 schoolchildren. Beeco volunteer Laura Kilian also travelled to Salyan, one of the country's regions, to meet with regional youth and speak to them about the need for environmental activism. Beeco also launched its first eco-booklet in April 2022. The booklet is comprised of major social media posts from Beeco since 2019, providing information in an easily digestible manner. It is available in both Azerbaijani and English.

Incha has also had one of her paintings selected as the winner of the APECS Canada art design contest. The painting draws upon and depicts the connection between women and nature, and highlights the unique role of indigenous peoples in that connection. She has also written about urban infrastructure in her hometown of Salyan, emphasising both the challenges and opportunities which exist in that space.

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United States

Abdelhadi Hussein

Abdelhadi is a young energy professional working diligently towards decarbonizing the building and transportation sectors across the United States. In 2021, Abdelhadi joined Willdan Group as an Energy Specialist. His work has managed to offset over 4,000 metric tonnes of CO2 emissions, achieving over $1.3 million in energy cost savings and incentives, with about 7,000,000 KWh mitigated. Abdelhadi's work focuses on collaborating with giant utility clients across the US, as well as building owners, to provide them with high-tech energy models detailing complex mechanical and electrical systems with potential energy conservation opportunities.

Abdelhadi previously worked as a Renewable Energy & Biofuels Research Assistant for 3 years at Prairie View A&M University. His research work focused on developing a new type of clean fuel to help decarbonize the US transportation sector. His thesis outlined potential opportunities for utilizing Switchgrass as a reliable source of clean energy. In 2019, his research work secured the BP Advancing Energy Scholarship, the Chevron Master's Student Scholarship, and was presented at the AEE World Energy Conference in Washington D.C.

 

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Colombia

Mileidy Julieth

Mileidy is the CEO of Híbridas, a comprehensive sex education project aimed at young people in the city of Santa Marta. It is oriented around 4 specific approaches in order to generate safe spaces through a network of comprehensive educators in sexuality, community bonds, self-care, dialogue and protection. The Gender Approach promotes respect for diverse sexualities and identities, equity and female empowerment through a sensitive exploration of social and historical processes around the representation of gender in Colombian society. The Differential Approach seeks to understand the context in which Híbridas operates and recognise the realities of young people, girls, and adolescents through continuous reflection, while also taking into account the specific needs of Santa Marta with regard to indigenous and Afro-Colombian populations.

The Psychosocial Approach seeks to influence society to generate investigative processes to better understand the social problems around the issue of sexuality in Santa Marta, while the Socio-Emotional Approach gives value to emotions and demystifies stereotypes in order for participants to recognise and manage their emotions. Híbridas has a project in a school in Santa Marta, carrying out workshops every Saturday. It has trained more than 25 students between 12 and 18 years old. The participating adolescents have developed campaigns to teach other students and have created a support network among themselves, with the guidance of tutors.

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Brazil

Mariana Carvalho

Brazilians in Tech was co-founded by Mariana as the first organisation in Brazil to consolidate comprehensive information for women in the technology sector into a single platform. Through it, they can connect with each other, with companies, universities, and also with other communities of women in STEM in Brazil and around the world. Brazilians in Tech aims to empower, encourage and support women in their careers. With more than 250 inspiring women directly participating, and more than 10,000 followers across social media, Brazilians in Tech brings the most relevant opportunities in science and technology for women working or interested in digital technologies.

The organisation wants to encourage women in the area of technology and computing and has partnered with many companies in Brazil such as Microsoft Reactor, Inteli, Kenzie Academy, Trybe, LuizaLabs, LinkedIn, Google, and many others, to bring programmes and opportunities to women in its communities. Brazilians in Tech has reached all 27 states in that country.

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Colombia

Ricardo Enrique Alba Torres

Ricardo is the co-founder of Eko Group H2O+, a Colombian social business that provides sustainable environmental solutions to the problems of water access and shortages in vulnerable communities with systems to harvest and filter rainwater. Every system is made with reused and recycled materials. Eko Group has increased its impact by more than 300% with the sale of its eco-technologies to companies and multinationals. Its collaborative efforts have allowed Eko Group to demonstrate the power and strength of generating alliances across and between sectors.

Public policy in Colombia does not include educational programmes to facilitate a comprehensive reuse of rainwater in the homes of urban residents. From the beginning, Eko Group has sought to improve awareness of the use of natural resources and generate a shift in attitude towards water collection. So far, the organisation has installed 250 water collection and filtration systems, mitigated 1.5 tonnes of CO2 emissions, directly benefitted 6,000 students, reused 10,500 PET bottles, recovered 25,000 litres of rainwater, and indirectly impacted more than 60,000 people.

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Ghana

Aiman Saeed

Social Impact Project is part of the Master in Management programme of ESMT Berlin. For this module, Aiman worked with her team to uplift two NGOs based out of Ghana. Aiman previously worked briefly with MEYFUND, founded by fellow One Young World Ambassador Salomey Osafo-Ampadu, and also with another charity named The Light Outreach Foundation, which supports forgotten children in Africa with accommodation and educational opportunities. One of their projects is the Sheiknah Home in Tema City, Ghana, where the orphanage provides food, shelter and education to over 40 vulnerable children.

Aiman and her team worked with The Light Outreach Foundation for over a month, assisting with various initiatives including the digitisation of documents, educational curriculum, social media outreach and strategy, and partnership outreach. She also successfully raised €1,200 to support the previously halted infrastructure development of the orphanage. Aiman's team visited the orphanage in-person to run a pilot educational boot camp to better understand the needs of the children living there. With the information they gathered through that trip. Aiman and her team created children's playbooks on digital skills and mental health. The objective behind the Social Impact Project was to support an organisation as pro-bono management consultants.

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Singapore

Lavanya Raju Ramanujan

Lavanya is passionate about skills-based volunteering and has held management and directorship-level roles within non-profits for the last 7 years. Lavanya currently volunteers as an advisor to Ground-Up Initiative, which was founded 14 years ago to address the environmental and social concerns of urban environments in Singapore. By utilising back-to-basics activities, green spaces, and involving the community in its processes, Ground-Up Initiative (GUI) connects people with one another and the environment. The initiative practices natural, soil-based, organic farming and uses craft as a platform to engage individuals from all sectors of life. This emphasis on physical participation in activities has helped participants re-evaluate their consumer habits.

Lavanya leads GUI’s thrust to refine organisational processes, craft SOPs, and implement governance mechanisms. She also advises management on strategic issues related to organisational viability and growth.
 
GUI has impacted more than 130,000 people, helping them reconnect and interact with nature and participate in a caring, inclusive community.

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Japan

Karthik Rampalli

Karthik is the Co-Founder and Global Strategy Advisor of MEXT Scholars Association, an organisation dedicated to providing representation and support for the alumni and current recipients of the Japanese Government's prestigious Monbukagakusho / MEXT Scholarship. The MEXT Scholars Association works directly with the Japanese Government to this end. They have provided hassle-free housing solutions for participants in a context where it can be otherwise difficult to find accommodation as a foreigner. During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, MEXT Scholars Association also subsidised PCR tests and quarantine fees for the batch of students who entered Japan in 2021.

The MEXT Scholars Association provides seminars on diversity at the workplace, career design boot camps, workshops, as well as community activities. It has also created a set of guide articles sharing the knowledge and experience of current and former scholars. The organisation currently has over 10,000 members in its community and works closely and actively with the Japanese Ministry of Education to provide meaningful career opportunities to scholars upon graduation.

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Japan

Kiyoka Tokumasu

Kiyoka is the Founder and President of Voices of Self-Made, an organization founded to inspire, encourage, and empower youths in Japan by sharing the mindsets and experiences of leaders, creators, and influencers around the world. So far, the organisation has hosted a number of successful events, creating opportunities for young people in Japan to meet diplomats such as the Ambassador of the Kingdom of the Netherlands to Japan, and interviewing Paralympic Track and Field Athletes. 

 

Voices of Self-Made strives to bridge Japan with the wider world, inspiring, encouraging, and empowering more young people in that country to become inclusive leaders working to build a better world for all. Kiyoka is excited to see how Voices of Self-Made's initiatives will grow and continue to positively impact Japan and elsewhere, with more projects and events planned for the near future. The organisation consists of three leaders and more than 10 young people who participate as members. Kiyoka was also active in the Social Impact Initiative Mentorship Programme of Bain & Company to cultivate the next generation of female leaders, in which she was invited to participate.

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Latin America/Venezuela

Juan Carlos Viloria Doria

Juan is the President of Coalition for Venezuela, a union of Venezuelan civil society organizations working to defend and promote human rights, freedoms, and democratic values. The organisation also seeks to address the humanitarian situation inside and outside of Venezuela, within the framework of the 49th General Assembly of the Organisation of American States in response to the need for an articulated, comprehensive, and effective response to the complex situation in that country.

 

The federation currently has more than 80 member organisations in more than 20 countries. It is the organisation of the Venezuelan diaspora with the greatest representation in advocacy spaces such as the United Nations, the European Union, and the Organisation of American States. The coalition's leadership has enabled it to bring project implementation opportunities closer to community-based organizations, as well as openness to participate in public policy formulation, design, and analysis processes in host countries. Awarded in 2021 by Refugee International with The Exceptional Service Award, Coalition for Venezuela has reached more than a million people directly and indirectly through the invaluable work of its members. 

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Botswana

Keaobaka Bome

Absa Bank Botswana has developed a number of initiatives driven by its citizenship team around financial literacy, work readiness for students, guest lectures for universities, and tree planting initiatives. Providing financial literacy has been a particularly important activity for the team, of which Keaobaka is an integral part. This emphasis on financial literacy stems from the realisation that a gap exists around basic money skills such as how to save, how to spend wisely, and how to diversify income streams in order to offset post-pandemic financial distresses.

To date, the team have held over 15 virtual and in-person sessions. Alongside this, they carry out monthly ready-to-work sessions for university students where they share experiences on how to prepare for the workplace as a graduate, and how to thrive and progress in your career. Their guest lecture initiatives aim to drive colleague volunteering in order to bridge the gap between what is learned in schools and what is done in the workplace, Through the citizenship team, Keaobaka has helped drive colleague volunteering, enabling the planting of over 720 trees.

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Ukraine

Ivona Kostyna

Ivona is the Head of Board of Veteran Hub, which launched in 2018 and united 10 key veteran service providers. The organisation serves as a router between the needs of veterans and service providers. In almost 4 years of operations, Veteran Hub has served over 8,000 unique clients, provided over 16,000 services and had over 32,000 visits at its locations across Ukraine. It has also supported 8 smaller veteran-serving organizations through a newly-established "Plus Plus" network of veteran spaces. Through all of this hands-on experience, Veteran Hub has gained unique expertise in veterans affairs and has subsequently launched a series of large-scale projects, targeting primary healthcare providers, mental health experts, employers and other groups, serving veterans. They believe that veteran reintegration is a community mission.

Since the beginning of Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine, Veteran Hub temporarily switched its key target audience from veterans to members of military families. It also closed all in-person consultations and focused on providing psychosocial services over the phone. While key services remain the same (employment, legal and psychological support), emergency response consultations and psychological support during Ukrainian migration have also become one of their top priorities. Veteran Hub launched a trust line for family members and has been operating since March 11th. The work of its trust line is focused on crisis support through providing consultation. Since March, the trust line has received over 1,500 client requests, and the numbers keep growing.

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