About the Next Generation Fellows Program

The UN Foundation believes that young people should be designers of their own future. 

Last year, we launched our pilot Next Generation Fellows program, bringing together eight young leaders to support the UN Secretary-General’s work to reimagine the future of global cooperation. 

The Next Generation Fellows reached out to hundreds of young people from around the world, and spoke with experts and leaders of all ages, to come up with solutions to some of the biggest challenges facing young people and future generations. 

Their brilliant ideas were included in the Secretary-General’s final Our Common Agenda report, and the Fellows also put together their own vision and plan called Our Future Agenda. Find out more about the first cohort here.

    Big Brainstorm 2023

    Launching a year of Action for the Sustainable Development Goals

    Next Generation Fellows

    Inés Yábar

    Inés Yábar

    Lead Fellow

    Inés is a young activist from Peru who’s been actively working towards a more sustainable future since she was 15. By volunteering in beach cleanups in the coastline of Peru, she helped collect data and organise thousands of volunteers to help inform policies in Peru: leading to the country banning single use plastic bags!

    She is currently the Global Youth Power Manager for Restless Development helping young people achieve a more just and sustainable world and sits on the leadership team. In 2021, she led the Youth Power Hacks helping young people find solutions to the issues in their communities.

    Inés is on the board of L.O.O.P. (a grassroots women led Peruvian social impact company conserving the marine ecosystem) and of Ensemble pour TECHO which she co-founded (an organisation seeking to overcome poverty in Latin America). Her previous experiences include working with organisations in France, Lebanon and Japan to reach the 2030 agenda.

    She was a part of the peruvian delegation in COP25 following the topic of deforestation and represented the Missing Majority at COP26. Inés is also a Global Shaper (Lima Hub), a Plastic Action Champion and sits on the Global Plastic Action Partnership Advisory committee.

    Anita Dywaba

    Anita Dywaba

    Gender Equality

    Anita is a 23-year-old qualified journalist and human rights activist, now working in the development field. Anita currently works as an Innovation Analyst at the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) as part of their Young Innovators program.

    Anita is leading the first Girl Up coalition in South Africa and co-founder of nkwenkwezinpo, a non-profit focusing on SDGs 4 and 5.

    One of her most outstanding achievements was when she spoke at a side event of the first-ever Summit For Democracy hosted by the President of the United States. At the event, she spoke about how voting in local elections is essential for sustaining local democracies and economies and why positive civic engagement, especially amongst youth voters, is crucial.

    Another highlight for Anita was when she executive produced a current affairs show called Politics Today for the Rhodes University TV (RUTV) Channel, which highlighted the rise in political apathy in the youth; using her media skills as an activism tool.

    Anita has spoken on various panels at Youth Summits, including the 2021 and 2022 GirlUp Leadership Summit. Anita describes herself as an avid campaigner and researcher, having worked on various international campaigns including with USAID’s YouthLead project on the importance of female representation in peacebuilding, as well as working on a youth research paper with the APRM project.

    Jacob Ellis

    Jacob Ellis

    Future Generations

    Jacob Ellis is a Next Generation Fellow from Wales. He is 29 years old and is a Lead Change Maker at the Office of the Future Generations Commissioner for Wales. His responsibilities include international outreach with strategic partners (including the United Nations, UNFCCC and intergovernmental agencies) and advising public institutions with their implementation of the Well-being of Future Generations Act across Wales.

    As a proud futurist, Jacob works with policymakers, leaders, youth activists and agencies to advocate for the needs and interests of future generations and has spoken at international events including COP26, World Government Summit, One Young World and UN High-Level Political Forum.

    He is also a member of the Sustainability Strategy Working Group for the Football Association of Wales and a Climate Justice Campaign Advisor for the Museums Association. Jacob is a Non-Executive Director at Literature Wales and a Trustee at Theatr Genedlaethol Cymru.

    Jacob is also an alumni member of the Unite 2030 Youth Delegate Programme. He is a former BBC Wales Journalist and served as President of Aberystwyth University Students’ Union. He is a former Trustee of Cardiff Third Sector Council and Scouts Cymru. Jacob holds a BA Degree in Welsh and International Politics (Aberystwyth University) and an MA Degree in Broadcast Journalism (Cardiff University).

    Claudette Salinas Leyva

    Claudette Salinas Leyva

    Future Generations

    Claudette is a Next Generation Fellow from Mexico. She is 22 years old and is an independent researcher and advocate for intergenerational equity in Latin America. Her main projects focus on exploring the role of international governance in protecting future generations and how we can make this goal more diverse. She also specializes in building institutional resilience across the global system, as low and middle-income countries need to have the means to enhance their infrastructure and face the next century’s challenges that could endanger their prosperity. 

    Before working in long-term governance, she collaborated in civil society organizations in Mexico. There, she accompanied victims of serious human rights violations, participated in strategic anti-corruption litigation, and created content against gender violence. She has submitted three Amicus Curiae to the Mexican Supreme Court and the Inter-American Human Rights Court on corruption victims’ rights, forced disappearance, and human rights defenders. 

    She is about to finish her Law Degree at ITAM University in Mexico City. Before college, she participated as a Civil Society Delegate in the Commission of the Status of Women 61 and 62, hosted at the United Nations Headquarters in NYC.

    Thaís Queiroz

    Thaís Queiroz

    Transforming Education

    Thaís is a Next Generation Fellow for the Transforming Education Summit and a Youth Representative of World Scouting. She has dedicated her studies and career to the causes of education, migration and human rights and worked in Geneva pursuing her Masters Degree at the Graduate Institute Geneva in Development Studies, with a focus in education in humanitarian settings.

    As a proud member of the Scout Movement for most of her life, she learned the power of volunteering to transform societies, through shared values and active citizenship. Thaís was part of the core planning team for the World Non-Formal Education Forum, a first-of-its kind event that convened the biggest players in non-formal education to take stock of trends and define the future of non-formal education.

    Alice Mukashyaka

    Alice Mukashyaka

    Transforming Education

    Alice Mukashyaka is a UN Fellow and the Advocacy Manager for Livelihoods and Education at Restless Development. In this role most recently, Alice coordinated the biggest youth-led study on global education since the pandemic hit, the ‘By Us, For Us’ and convened the #MakeEducationWork campaign in partnership with the RewirED Summit, reaching nearly 13 million young people.

    She is the co-founder of Starlight, a Rwandan Ed-tech social enterprise that makes STEM learning kits and introduces high school students to STEM careers, mentorship, and role models. Previously, Alice was a Mastercard Foundation Youth Ambassador where she coordinated meaningful youth participation for the MasterCard Foundation’s report on Secondary Education in Africa. She was also a Youth Think Tank researcher, exploring barriers women and girls face in STEM and construction fields, delivering a report with a call to action of linking women to new industries as a way of driving social and economic change in Africa.

    Alice advocates for meaningful youth engagement and access to quality education for all. Her education background covers global challenges from the African Leadership University and she lives to witness a sustainable world with equal access to opportunities and safety.

    Kelechi Achinonu

    Kelechi Achinonu

    Justice

    Kelechi Achinonu is a Nigerian lawyer who is passionate about the fusion of law and technology to provide access to justice for all. Her work as the Regional Head of The Hague Institute for Innovation of Law (HiiL), West Africa involves designing and implementing programmes to make justice user-friendly, contributing to HiiL’s mission of ensuring 150 million people are able to resolve their most pressing justice problems by 2030.

    She trained as a software engineer and has led product development efforts at the foremost legal-tech company in Nigeria. The products she has built has made it easy for lawyers to have access to digitised law reports and judgements in Nigeria.

    She is the founder of Techlawyered; a media-tech platform that advocates for more tech inclusion in law and highlights profiles of builders in the justice ecosystem in Africa. She also leads Legal Hackers Lagos, a global movement of lawyers, policymakers, designers, technologists who develop creative solutions to the most pressing issues at the intersection of law & technology.

    Alumni

    Agnes Cynthia Amoding

    Amélie J. Mariage

    Aya-Maria Rouhana

    Jevanic Henry

    Kartik Sawhney

    Poonam Ghimire

    Valeria Colunga

    Aishwarya Machani

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