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Meet the Fellows

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Congratulations to everyone and may your dedication be an inspiration to all.

Winners of the YouthActionNet® Fellowship 2013

Adam Camenzuli

Canada

Project: KARIBU Solar Power
Age: 25
Website: http://www.karibusolar.com

Adam co-founded KARIBU Solar Power, a social enterprise, to bring much-needed light to thousands of rural villagers in Tanzania, especially students studying after dark. Its goal: to produce solar lamps that improve health and safety, avoiding the toxic emissions produced by kerosene lamps. The solar lamps, which can also be used to charge mobile phones, are designed so that low-income families can make payments in small increments. Over time, KARIBU solar lamp owners not only save money, but contribute to their children’s education. Adam and his team sold 2,000 solar lamps in Tanzania in 2011-2012 and plan to extend their business model to other countries in East Africa in the future.

Alejandro Maza Ayala

Mexico

Project: Yo Propongo (I Propose)
Age: 26
Website: http://www.yopropongo.org

Through Yo Propongo, Alejandro leverages the power of technology to facilitate knowledge sharing between the general public and policymakers. “While citizens have lots of ideas for solving social problems,” says Alejandro, “they lack the channels to collaborate with government.” Yo Propongo utilizes diverse online tools (social networks, mobile apps, widgets) and offline channels (SMS, tablets) to gather input from all sectors of society on issues ranging from crime prevention to civic participation. In Mexico City, for example, more than 30,000 citizens have been consulted on a range of issues, with 65 percent of proposals resulting in changes to programs or laws. Alejandro’s long-term goal is to make the model accessible to local governments and to strengthen civic engagement in more cities throughout Mexico and abroad.

Andi Taufan Garuda Putra

Indonesia

Project: Amartha Microfinance
Age: 26
Website: http://www.amartha.co.id

Andi founded Amartha Microfinance to provide affordable financial services to low-income individuals living in remote rural areas of Indonesia. In a country where more than 100 million people live on less than $2/day, Andi’s organization has provided average loans of US$100 to over 3,000 clients in over 50 villages. Andi – and his team of 30 – target women, ages 18 to 65, and encourage them to start home-based businesses. Amartha Microfinance is based on a profit-sharing model in which members of small groups pay weekly installments to meet their loan obligations. In addition to its financial services, Amartha Microfinance provides training in basic financial literacy and community organizing.

Anna Oposa

Philippines

Project: Save Philippine Seas
Age: 25
Website: http://savephilippineseas.tumblr.com/

Anna and eight other “active netizens” met in April 2011 to respond to a threat to endangered marine wildlife in the Philippines. What began as a meeting over Skype became a movement. Today, as co-founder of Save Philippine Seas, Anna works with a lean team of five core members, plus some 150 volunteers, to lobby for the enforcement of environmental laws and harness the power of social media to build awareness about marine conservation. In addition to its research and advocacy efforts, Save Philippine Seas has launched a community-based conservation project to protect thresher sharks and soon, community members will learn how to preserve sea turtle nesting sites.

Anna Sowa

United Kingdom

Project: Chouette Films
Age: 27
Website: http://www.chouettefilms.co.uk/

As a film producer, Anna understands the role that powerful storytelling can play in inspiring audiences to take action on critical social and environmental issues. She also recognizes that nonprofits, social ventures, academic institutions, and the public sector often lack the visual evidence and tools needed to effectively promote their work. Through Chouette Films, an award-winning film production company, Anna and her husband produce inspiring work for a range of clients, including humanitarian and environmental organizations operating in the developing world that often can’t afford to produce high-quality films. Says Anna, “We collaborate to produce videos or documentaries that are a powerful force for change, that are transformative, and that inspire people and organizations to engage and act.”

Basant Motawi

Egypt

Project: Imprint Movement
Age: 24

Basant and a group of fellow students at Ain Shams University launched the Imprint Movement to combat sexual harassment in Egyptian society. The initiative recruits and trains volunteers who collaborate with police to patrol high-risk neighborhoods in Cairo at prime times to prevent assaults. Volunteers also visit public places—like the subway—to pass out educational information. Support is offered to victims through the assistance of trained experts and professors. To date, Imprint has helped over 30 victims and contributed to a decrease in incidents of harassment in targeted areas. Basant hopes to expand the Movement’s impact through launching additional university-based chapters.

Carolina García

Costa Rica

Project: Bellelli Educación
Age: 29
Website: http://www.bellellieducacion.com

Passionate about early childhood education, Carolina founded Bellelli Educación in the belief that children need a culture of play to develop their full potential. Among its activities, the organization hosts “Pop-Up Playgrounds” (PopAps) in public spaces or schools that allow children to express their creativity and explore their curiosity through the use of cardboard boxes, fabrics, tape, and other materials. In 2014, Carolina will open the first Early Childhood Center in Costa Rica inspired by the Reggio Emilia approach to education, which focuses on child-directed learning and family and community engagement. She also recently launched a professional development program for teachers.

Charles Batte

Uganda

Project: Family Health Centre
Age: 26

With thousands of doctors in Uganda turning down opportunities to work in rural clinics, Charles saw a need for more equitable service delivery. Through Family Health Centre, he is building a sustainable model of healthcare provision in which profits from an urban health center, currently in operation, will eventually support secondary clinics in rural villages. Proceeds from a banana plantation provide additional funding. Doctors will work on a rotational basis between the urban and rural centers and each will have a registered number of families in his/her care. The approach is designed to ensure the same quality of care in both settings, while enhancing efficiency. A medical student aspiring to be a heart surgeon, Charles was selected as World Merit and Smaller Earth's Global Social Enterprise Ambassador in 2012 and traveled across five continents to inspire young people.


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