Get Inspired. Get Engaged. #YouthDay

Submitted on Mon, August 10, 2015

Each year for #YouthDay, promoting youth issues can sometimes neglect to offer tangible examples for why young people should be more included in decision-making processes, and valued as change agents in schools, companies and organizations.

Many young people are leading their own movements for social change and promoting the core skills of empathy, teamwork, fluid leadership and changemaking. These youth changemakers refuse to wait for solutions to be discovered by others in the future. These changemakers are building a better tomorrow today, and are boldly creating new pathways for fighting poverty, protecting our planet and building understanding. 

In celebration of International Youth Day, which for the Ashoka’s Youth Years team is every day, we wanted to promote young problem solvers, and encourage you to connect with some of these young changemakers and their youth ventures. If you are a young changemaker yourself, or a aspiring youth venturer, please connect with us and share your innovative ideas and changemaker journeys by tweeting to @youth_venture.

Get inspired!

In our new Youth Venture video, three young social entrepreneurs are bravely deploying new alternatives for fighting poverty, building empathy, and spreading clean energy. Zach was in college when he realized his desire to fight the poverty of over 1 billion people in the world through storytelling and documentary film making. Eden was only ten years old when she discovered the magic of the sun. Today, she runs her own solar energy company, providing clean and safe energy alternatives for those without electricity. Amit was in high school when he started an empathy building initiative for high schools across the country. Check out their changemaker journeys. You too can help build a better future today. 

[SHARE this inspirational video with your networks using #YouthDay or #YouthNow:]

Some key takeaways from young leaders in the video

  • Don’t be afraid to take a first step. 

  • Even if rocks are being thrown at you and your new idea, keep pushing forward. When ‘me’ turns into ‘we’, that is when everything will change. 

  • Stick close to what matters to you and do not let the noise of what everyone else is doing drive your decision-making. 


Get connected to youth-led ventures

Our world is filled with problem-finders, but what about problem-solvers? Ashoka’s Youth Venture sees today’s youth as the carriers of innovation and solutions that our world needs to build a change not just in systems (education, economies, etc..) but also mind-sets.

To get you inspired to start your own changemaker journey, or, if you want to team up with existing youth ventures and changemakers, check out some of these social projects being led by young people in communities from Argentina to Kenya. As the world observes #YouthDay, make sure to share these positive examples of changemaking with your community on Facebook, Twitter and even with your school or organization!

Share these tweets!

How does this teenager in Peru mobilize a community to protect & clean the environment w/ her ecobusiness? #AYVA2015

WATCH how a college student is bringing clean water to villages in India & preventing stomach illness: #AYVA2015

These youth are changing the game to build a better world. Help them win 1K & VOTE: @icivics #socent @Ashoka 

These youth ventures are helping advance people & planet. Your vote could help them win $1K from #SocEnt 

As part of iCivics competition, these two youth ventures are up for $1,000 in funding to help expand their projects. Vote for your favorite now and contact them if you want to get involved!


Sonrisas is a youth-led NGO which works with at-risk children in Esteban Echevarría, Buenos Aires province. Sonrisas works with an impact model in which different programs especially designed for children´s needs, help them grow and develop, in order to guarantee that they reach adulthood with opportunities. Connect with the youth-led of Sonrisas today! Watch their impact video.

1 Bob

Stirred by the harsh learning environment children in disadvantaged schools encounter, 21 year old Christine Gatwiri decided to commit the one-shilling coins she has saved in her piggy bank over the years to start the ‘1 Bob Initiative’. Today, the Soh Wiki & 1 Bob Initiative is a youth led, not-for-profit organization that seeks to assist primary school children from financially disadvantaged backgrounds in Kenya in their pursuit of education. The youth venture also enhances their financial awareness in order to develop an economically empowered youth. Facebook: The 1 Bob Initiative

1 Bob Initiative (photo by 1 Bob)