18-19 JUNE 2019 / Tour & Taxis / Brussels

Meet the #EDD21 Young Leaders

Meet the #EDD21 Young Leaders

Meet the #EDD21 Young Leaders

The European Commission has invited young people from around the world to play an active role in this year’s EDD.

Young people are key drivers of policy making and change. We give them a voice at the EDD through the Young Leaders Programme, an initiative gathering 17 outstanding young people from around the world. Our Young Leaders will share their expertise, ideas and ambitions for a sustainable future in open and fresh debates.

  • Paa Kwesi Essonh Abak Bonney
    EDD Young Leader, Ghana

    Sustainable urbanisation

    Paa Kwesi E. A. Bonney is a community development enthusiast from Ghana and works with the Research and Defence Cooperation Directorate of Ghana’s Ministry of Defence. He serves as the Programme Coordinator for KIDCITY GHANA – a non-profit organisation that provides support for vulnerable communities. Over the years, Paa Kwesi has co-led a team to conduct a research that helped identify and provide support to meet the needs of 12 partnering orphanage institutions. This resulted in the assessment of the needs of 700 orphans to develop tailored solutions. He seeks to pioneer innovative solutions that promote sustainable urbanisation by tackling the global burden of waste in contemporary societies. He remains passionate about inspiring positive change in the world around him.

    Paa Kwesi Essonh Abak Bonney
    EDD Young Leader, Ghana
    Sustainable urbanisation
  • Rida Boutros
    EDD Young Leader, Lebanon

    Protected area management and species conservation

    Rida Boutros lives in Lebanon and holds a Masters in Biodiversity: Management and Conservation of Natural Resources, as well as a Bachelor in Earth and Life Sciences. She currently works as a Project Coordinator on an Agricultural Vocational Education Programme for vulnerable adolescents and youth at AVSI Foundation. Before that, she was the Project Manager at Jouzour Loubnan Association, a local NGO that promotes sustainable restoration of Lebanese ecosystems. Also, she was named a Youth Leader on the 6th Mediterranean Forests Week, and EU Med Dialogue Young Fellow in 2020.

    Rida Boutros
    EDD Young Leader, Lebanon
    Protected area management and species conservation
  • Nandin-Erdene Enkhtuvshin
    EDD Young Leader, Mongolia

    Green finance

    Nandin-Erdene Enkhtuvshin is from Mongolia and holds a Bachelor in Business Administration - Applied Economics, from the School Of Business And Economics, Mongolian University of Life Sciences. She works as a Project and Partnership Manager at the Mongolian Sustainable Finance Association. Before that, she was a Consultant for the Project Preparation Facility Of Mongolian Green Finance Corporation Project at the Green Climate Fund (GCF), and a Researcher on Agricultural Project for The World Bank Group in Ulaanbaatar. She is convinced that finance can play a key role in allocating investment to sustainable companies and projects and thus accelerate the transition to a low-carbon, circular economy.

    Nandin-Erdene Enkhtuvshin
    EDD Young Leader, Mongolia
    Green finance
  • Kishore Gopal Reddy
    EDD Young Leader, India

    Green economy-related education and training

    Kishore Gopal Reddy lives in India and is the Co-Founder of Youth for Sustainable Impact (YSI), that provides skill development and capacity building for rural youth and women to manufacture eco-friendly products such as bangles, earrings, home-decor items or apparels. Since its creation, YSI has been training over 1000 women and carried out research on eco-friendly dyes. Kishore holds a BSc Mechanical Engineering.

    Kishore Gopal Reddy
    EDD Young Leader, India
    Green economy-related education and training
  • Hamid Arrum Harahap
    EDD Young Leader, Indonesia

    Indigenous peoples and local communities

    Hamid Arrum Harahap is PhD Student, whose thesis focuses on Integrated Natural Resources Management. He holds a BSc in Economics. He was named Youth Leader Climate Change of Indonesia for UNESCO and a researcher for forest services study for the local communities in Tapanuli. In the past, he also worked as a communication officer for the Sumatra Orangutan Conservation Programme. He is passionate about nature-based solutions to tackle climate change and the fight against deforestation, which causes mass extinction and loss of rights for indigenous peoples and local communities.

    Hamid Arrum Harahap
    EDD Young Leader, Indonesia
    Indigenous peoples and local communities
  • Suneha Jagannathan
    EDD Young Leader, India

    Sustainable blue economy

    Suneha Jagannathan holds a Master in Tropical Biodiversity and Ecosystems and a Bachelor in Advanced Zoology and Biotechnology. She has carried out research on the restoration of marine biodiversity, the development of sustainable fishing methods and the use of artificial reefs in Palk Bay, Tamil Nadu. She also conducted research on the ecological monitoring of artificial reef ecosystems in Pondicherry. She is a Project Head at Artificial Reef Program.

    Suneha Jagannathan
    EDD Young Leader, India
    Sustainable blue economy
  • Nomsa Betty Kamanga
    EDD Young Leader, Zambia

    Wildlife, security and development

    Nomsa Betty lives in Zambia and holds an Advanced Certificate in Nature Conservation Transfrontier Conservation Management, from the College for Community-Based Natural Resource Management. As an assistant researcher for the Zambian Carnivore Programme, she conducts field work to research and conserve large carnivore species (African wild dog, lion, hyaena, cheetah, leopard) and their habitat throughout Zambia. Her responsibilities involve collecting data on survival, reproduction, population of lions, wild dogs, leopards and hyena. She was a speaker on the SADC-GIZ TFCA Evaluation Project for which she discussed the community involvement in the establishment of a Trans-Frontier Conservation Area.

    Nomsa Betty Kamanga
    EDD Young Leader, Zambia
    Wildlife, security and development
  • Olivia Livingstone
    EDD Young Leader, Liberia

    Pollution and chemicals

    Olivia Livingstone holds a Bachelor in Environmental Science. She interned at Fauna & Flora International, for which she Conducted Environmental Impact Assessment surveys and Conducted Biomonitoring surveys in the Sapo National Park. She is the Founder & Executive Director of Green Stewards Inc, for which she developed an awareness-raising Campaign against Plastic Pollution.

    Olivia Livingstone
    EDD Young Leader, Liberia
    Pollution and chemicals
  • David Watson Mwabila
    EDD Young Leader, Zambia

    Climate change: natural resources, food and mobility

    David Watson Mwabila lives in Zambia and co-founded Dytech Zambia, a social enterprise funded by the Gates Foundation, that runs a rural livelihood improvement programme. Dytech Zambia helps farmers produce honey and value added products for local and export markets. Before that, David was a Economic Affairs Intern at UNECA in Zambia. He holds a BA in Economics and a Post Graduate Certificate in Leadership In Business and Entrepreneurship from the University of Iowa.

    David Watson Mwabila
    EDD Young Leader, Zambia
    Climate change: natural resources, food and mobility
  • Chibunna Ogbonna
    EDD Young Leader, Nigeria

    Sustainable energy

    Chibunna Ogbonna is the Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer at Renewcycle Energy Limited, a Nigerian based renewable energy startup on a mission to power Africa’s sustainable energy future through innovation. He has a background in Chemical engineering from the Federal University of Technology Owerri, Nigeria. He represented Nigeria at the first International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) Youth Forum in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates in 2020 and was nominated democratically by the SDG 7 Youth Constituency, United Nations Major Group for Children and Youth as the Africa Youth Representative at the 4th meeting of the High Level Group of Personalities on Europe-Africa Relations on Forging an Africa-Europe Climate Alliance: Green Transition, Sustainable Energy and Agriculture. He is a Social Innovator at LEAP Africa and Sahara Impact Fund fellow at Sahara Foundation. Drawing inspiration out of the impact of COVID-19 in Nigeria and the consequences of inadequate electricity supply for primary healthcare clinics across Sub Saharan Africa, Chibunna and his team launched the Lighting Up Nigeria Initiative (LUNI), a social impact project on a mission to power one primary healthcare clinic per community in Nigeria. Chibunna Ogbonna is currently a fellow of the International Sustainability Academy, Hamburg-Germany. He plans to gain a Master’s degree in Sustainable energy future technologies and a Master’s in Business Administration from Harvard Business School by 2024.

    Chibunna Ogbonna
    EDD Young Leader, Nigeria
    Sustainable energy
  • Sherine Omondi
    EDD Young Leader, Kenya

    Rural transformation and food systems

    Sherine Omondi is based in Kenya and is a Programme Coordinator at K-SAMMIT, a community-based organization that trains farmers on the importance of sustainable agriculture and clean food production. K-SAMMIT also works alongside the local government to help farmers obtain rural credit for farming, to develop small rural markets, and develop good road networks for the farmers’ product to reach markets.

    Sherine Omondi
    EDD Young Leader, Kenya
    Rural transformation and food systems
  • Ricardo Andres Pineda Guzman
    EDD Young Leader, Honduras

    Transboundary watersheds

    Ricardo Andres lives in Honduras and holds a Bachelor in Sustainable Development Engineering and is a Communications and Outreach Practitioner at the Centro de Agua para America Latina y el Caribe, where he communicates for a research group dedicated on efforts for water, energy and food security nexus. He was an official delegate at the Conference of Parties (COP25) in Spain.

    Ricardo Andres Pineda Guzman
    EDD Young Leader, Honduras
    Transboundary watersheds
  • Ruvimbo Samanga
    EDD Young Leader, Zimbabwe

    Research, data and new technologies

    Ruvimbo Samanga is the National Point of Contact in Zimbabwe for the Space Generation Advisory Council in Support of the United Nations Programme on Space Applications. Her work focuses on research satellite capacity in the context of alleviated climate related security risks on the African continent, and engaging both public and private initiatives on proliferating satellite use for the common benefit of the citizenry, as an immediate climate concern, amongst other socio-economic benefits. She is currently pursuing a Masters of Law (LLM) from the International Trade and Investment Law in Africa.

    Ruvimbo Samanga
    EDD Young Leader, Zimbabwe
    Research, data and new technologies
  • Joan Tonui
    EDD Young Leader, Kenya

    Seascapes and coastal areas

    Joan Tonui lives in Kenya and hold a Master in Water, Supply and Sanitation and a Bachelor in Public Health. She is the founder of Green Towns Initiative, whose key project, Protecting the Flow of River, uses rivers to create sustainable livelihoods and focuses on growing bamboo and other indigenous water-friendly trees along the river that can replace exotic trees.

    Joan Tonui
    EDD Young Leader, Kenya
    Seascapes and coastal areas
  • Daniel Villamar
    EDD Young Leader, Ecuador

    Green and circular economy

    Daniel Villamar is from Ecuador and is the #FridayforFuture Ecuador Strategy Coordinator. In this capacity, he created a high-school network for climate action in Quito, with the goal of planting one million trees and educating more than 100,000 volunteers in the process. He holds a Bachelor in Political Science and International Relations, and was a representative at the C40 World Mayors Summit Copenhagen 2020. He is currently General Secretary of TANDARI Youth Assembly for Sustainability. This is a youth collaborative action network focused on developing projects, campaigns and initiatives to promote sustainability in Ecuador.

    Daniel Villamar
    EDD Young Leader, Ecuador
    Green and circular economy
  • Isabella Villanueva-García
    EDD Young Leader, Chile

    Water and sanitation

    Isabella Villanueva-García is from Chile and currently studies Civil Engineering. Her Master thesis focuses on hydraulics saniatation and environement. She worked as a trainee hydraulic engineer apprentice at consulting firm AKROS Ingeniería LTDA. She is the President of the NGO “Ceus Chile”, a network of sustainability students & professionals and the co-founder of the Sustainability University Students Congress in Chile.

    Isabella Villanueva-García
    EDD Young Leader, Chile
    Water and sanitation
  • Richard Wambua
    EDD Young Leader, Kenya

    Forest and landscape management

    Richard Wambua holds a Bachelor in International Relations and is the Director and CEO of Meforest Initiative & Greenpap Innovations. The organisation monitors tree survival and ensures a speedy and sustainable achievement of the Constitutional and Presidential Call to have 10% of Kenya’s Forest mapped by 2022.

    Richard Wambua
    EDD Young Leader, Kenya
    Forest and landscape management

Young leaders 2021