Influential young changemakers recognized by UN |

Biennial, Office of the Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for Youth select young changemakers who are at the forefront of efforts to combat the world’s most pressing problems and whose leadership is a catalyst for the achievement of the sustainable development goals .

The current group of leaders was selected after an open call for applications earlier this year, which resulted in more than 5,400 applications from more than 190 countries. Since its launch in 2016, the initiative has attracted millions of young people around the world.

17 young leaders for sustainable development goals (SDGs), are a diverse, high-achieving group, aged 17 to 29, from every corner of the world and working across all UN pillars, including sustainable development, human rights, peace and security.

Among them were an aspiring astronaut, a poet, and a Paralympic medalist. Others range from artists to climate entrepreneurs and educational innovators.

“The Young Leaders for Sustainable Development Goals 2022 class represents an incredibly diverse, intersecting and inspiring group of young people who reflect the best of activism and advocacy. global youth when it comes to challenging the status quo and creating a better world for all.” Jayathma Wickramanayake, UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for Youth.

“Even amid the ongoing pandemic, climate crisis, and global instability, these young people demonstrate tremendous resilience, resourcefulness and leadership in finding solutions. innovative solutions to the world’s greatest challenges”.

A safe space for women

Ronelle King, award-winning Gender Equity Activist from Barbados, and Young Leader for the Sustainable Development Goals.

In 2016, Ronelle King, an award-winning gender equality activist from Barbados, founded the hashtag #LifeInLeggings. Created as a safe space for women experiencing sexual violence to express themselves, it has evolved into a grassroots organization: women, encouraged by solidarity, empowered to speak to social media platforms about their experiences.

King went on to play a key role in the Reclaim Our Streets women’s solidarity march, and Pink Congress, which seeks to increase women’s participation in the decision-making space, was awarded the award. Nelson Mandela-Graca Machel Innovation Award 2021 in the category ‘Democratization of Governance Systems and Processes’.

Her other accolades include the Queen’s Young Leaders Award in 2017, the Queen’s Young Leaders Award in 2018, Queen Elizabeth II at Buckingham Palace, the Future Island Leaders Award. 2022 and the Changemaker Ignite Caribbean 30 under 30 Award in 2022.

Swim uphill

Jamal Hill, US Paralympic athlete, and young leader for the goals of sustainable development.

Jamal Hill represented the United States as a swimmer at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games, winning bronze. He is dedicated to helping others learn to swim, and cuts down on the number of people who drown each year.

Mr. Hill uses his global platform to provide swimming education resources, opportunities and inspiration to millions of people around the world, including young people with disabilities.

Mr. Hill is the founder of the Swim Up Hill Foundation, which focuses on reaching low- and middle-income communities of color both nationally and internationally that are most at risk of drowning. To date, the organization has established partnerships throughout the United States, as well as international programs in Colombia, Portugal and in countries in North Africa.

Health, fashion and human rights

Mayada Adil, a Sudanese medical doctor, fashion designer, women's rights advocate for health equity and a refugee rights activist.  She is also a Young Leader for the Sustainable Development Goals.

Mayada Adil is a Sudanese medical doctor, fashion designer, women’s rights advocate for health equity and a refugee rights activist. Based in France, she has carried out campaigns focused on ending gender-based violence, particularly against female genital mutilation in Sudan and Mali.

Ms. Adil was selected by the French Foreign Ministry to represent Sudanese youth at the Paris Conference on Sudan in 2021 and she represented Sudanese women at the Generation Equality Forum where she addressed the importance of importance of integrating refugee women into societies and communities throughout France .

The LaLoupeCreative arts platform, co-founded by Ms. Adil, supports refugee artists around the world, offering them the opportunity to participate in a training program that can help develop their skills and create out “art clinics”.

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