Recently, 20 youth were honored as 2011 YouthActionNet® Global Fellows by the International Youth Foundation (IYF). YouthActionNet® seeks to develop a new generation of socially-conscious global citizens who create positive change in their communities, their countries, and the world. The Sylvan/Laureate Foundation is the lead sponsor of the Global YouthActionNet® program and a founding co-sponsor the YouthActionNet® institutes operated at Universidad del Valle de México, Universidad Anhembi Morumbi, Istanbul Bilgi University, Universidad Europea de Madrid, Universidad Peruana de Ciencias Aplicadas, and Universidad Nacional Andrés Bello. This year, the program celebrated its 10th Anniversary.
Universidad del Valle de México was the first Laureate-based institution to host a Global YouthActionNet® event. In addition to participating in a week-long training at a retreat center in Cuernavaca, this year's fellows were honored at an awards ceremony at Casa Don Juan Manuel in Mexico City, Mexico. Additionally, they engaged in a one-on-one leadership round table with Bill Reese, President and CEO of the International Youth Foundation, Douglas L. Becker, Chairman and CEO of Laureate Education, Inc. and Jan Owen, CEO, Foundation for Young Australians.
"We are pleased to welcome the 2011 Global Fellows to Mexico," said Dieter Holtz, CEO of UVM. "For five years, we have worked in partnership with IYF to support an emerging generation of young leaders in Mexico. Now, it is our pleasure to introduce some of Mexico's finest young innovators to their peers leading change in 16 countries around the globe."
Among this year's Global Fellows are former honorees of Laureate-based national programs, including:
Anhembi Morumbi Youth Initiative:
Henrique Rocha Mendes: Henrique co-founded Batique Arte (Drumming Art), which teaches positive values to children, who are often neglected and lack a strong sense of cultural identity. Through the volunteer-led project, children and teenagers benefit from percussion, singing, and folk-dancing workshops. To learn more, visit www.batuquearte.com.br.
UEM Young Social Entrepreneurs Award:
Gabriel Bastardo Venegas: Gabriel created La Guia del Inmigrante (The Immigrant's Guide) as a mass media magazine to further social integration and facilitate meaningful connections among individuals from diverse cultures. To learn more, visit: www.laguiadelinmigrante.org.
Inés Cuatrecasas: Inés co-founded Mille Collines (A Thousand Hills) as a social enterprise that creates fashion products – clothing and accessories – in Rwanda that are sold in Africa, the U.S., and Europe. To learn more, visit: www.millecollines.org.
UVM Award for Social Development:
Rodrigo Arnaud Bello: Rodrigo founded the Techamos Un Mano (Lend a Helping Hand) project, a recycling initiative which engages student volunteers to collect discarded materials and construct new homes. To learn more, visit: www.tum.org.mx.
Young Social Entrepreneurs @ Bilgi:
Aysegul Guzel: Through Zumbara (Time Bank Project), Aysegul has created an alternative economy using a social network to enable individuals to exchange services without the use of money. To learn more, visit: www.zumbara.com.