The YES SDG Virtual Summit was a three-day virtual event that took place on April 17, 18, and 19. The virtual summit promoted and featured YES alumni projects on the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs). Each virtual session was led by a YES alumnus with experience in designing and implementing projects that promote a specific SDG. Session leaders presented on an SDG and imparted advice on project design and implementation.
The goal of the SDG Virtual Summit was threefold:
- Learn about each United Nations Sustainable Development Goal
- Learn strategies to design and implement projects
- Be inspired and motivated to develop projects in your own community that align with the SDGs
Each session leader presented on their assigned SDG and project for approximately thirty minutes. Attendees attended as many sessions as they could, and popped in and out of the webinar room over the course of the three-day summit.
The summit was also streamed live on the YES program Facebook page, engaging the YES community worldwide.
YES SDG Virtual Summit Schedule
Tuesday, April 17
8:00am SDG 16: Peace, Justice, and Strong Institutions - Aisha Munir and Adu Nasir Ahmad (Ghana)
9:00am SDG 10: Reduced Inequalities - Priya Parkash (Pakistan)
9:45am SDG 17: Partnerships for the Goals - Special Guest Hazami Barmada - CEO of the Barmada Group, UN consultant, founder of the Global People's Summit, and DoS Citizen Diplomat
10:15am SDG 6: Clean Water and Sanitation - Stephane Kamtchuing Fodjo (Cameroon)
11:00am SDG 9: Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure - Gulshan Jubaed Prince (Bangladesh)
11:45am SDG 5: Gender Equality - Munif Khan (Bangladesh)
Wednesday, April 18
12:00pm SDG 13: Climate Action - Lyne Chezem (Cameroon)
12:45pm SDG 2: Zero Hunger - Fily Coulibaly (Mali)
1:30pm SDG 1: No Poverty - Rosemary Kwofie (Ghana)
2:15pm SDG 11: Sustainable Cities and Communities - Brainstorm and Working Session
3:00pm SDG 7: Affordable and Clean Energy - Nor-ain Kumayog (Phillipines)
3:45pm SDG 4: Quality Education - Gulshan Jubaed Prince and Munif Khan (Bangladesh)
Thursday, April 19
9:30am SDG 12: Responsible Consumption and Production - Ang Zheng Feng (Malaysia)
10:15am SDG 15: Life on Land - Bakari Iddi Mtili (Tanzania)
11:00am SDG 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth - Kalthoom Al-Khamayasi (Oman)
11:45am SDG 3: Good Health and Well-Being - Mohammed Wahaj Khan and Sanuallah Jannisar (Pakistan)
12:45pm SDG 14: Life Below Water - Brainstorm and Working Session
1:15pm Closing Ceremony
Meet the Session Leaders
SDG 1: No Poverty
Rosemary Kwofie (YES 2008-2009, Ghana, hosted by AFS in Frazee, MN) is a young woman who strives to imagine and create a positive and bright future for the young people of Ghana. The goal of Rosemary’s project is to help young people develop the skills and cultivate a strong state of mind to generate income on their own if they find themselves without an employer. Rosemary’s work is promoting the vision of SDG 1: No Poverty. Rosemary has attended YES for Peace, volunteered for the YES ICT program, and attended the YES SDG 2030 Summit in Accra, Ghana. Travelling, sightseeing and improving her French proficiency are some of Rosemary’s favorite pastimes.
SDG 2: Zero Hunger
Fily Coulibaly (YES 2011-2012, Mali, hosted by CCI in Stratham, NH) is an emerging leader currently working in the sector of new agricultural technologies in Mali and Africa. Her passion for science has taken her through the discovery of biotechnology, new ways and technologies to enhance agricultural activities and add value to agricultural products for the benefit of both farmers and consumers. Through biotechnology and her altruistic outlook on life, she sees an opportunity to end hunger in Africa and around the world. Fily is an active member of the YES Alumni Association of Mali of which she had held the positions of vice president and treasurer. She’s also a co-founder and acting president of the Association Mali Djigui that aims at helping disadvantaged families and promote social inclusion since 2015. She advocates for sustainable development by actively leading and participating to innovative and impactful projects, mostly in support of vulnerable communities.
SDG 3: Good Health and Well-Being
Two YES alumni will present on SDG 3, Mohammad Wahaj Khan and Sanuallah Jannisar
Mohammed Wahaj Khan (YES 2016-2017, Pakistan, hosted by CIEE in Seattle, WA) will be presenting on SDG 3, Good Health and Well Being, because he is passionate about ensuring healthy lives and promote wellbeing for all at all ages in Pakistan. Mohammed, along with his counterparts, has led several projects that offer medical care, medicine, counseling, and awareness free of cost to vulnerable populations. Mohammed is an extrovert, always keen to learn about the globalizing world. He explains that he is enthusiastic and sporty, and he has a deep love for photography, music, and debates!
Sanaullah Jannisar (YES 2016-2017, Pakistan, hosted by AYA/AIFS in El Paso, TX) has a keen interest towards being an active member of his community. Making a difference is what he has always believed in, and Sanaullah explains that nothing is worth more than a human life. Sanaullah has dedicated his efforts towards the health and well-being of his community – he has experience designing projects that provide free medicine and medical care for vulnerable populations in Pakistan. In his free time Sanaullah likes to debate and is active in theatre. A fun fact is that he goes by the nickname Gallivanter because he loves to explore.
SDG 4: Quality Education
Two YES alumni will present on SDG 4, Munif Khan and Gulshan Jubaed Prince, who are also presenting on SDG 5, and SDG 9, respectively.
Munif Khan (YES 2011-2012, Bangladesh, hosted by AC in Altoona, IO) is passionate about the First Amendment rights and is a strong supporter of gender equality. After the completion of his YES exchange year, he decided to continue serving the community. He has coordinated seven community service projects in Bangladesh and has been trained in three international workshops in India. His projects in Bangladesh include self defense and confidence building training for women, awareness project regarding citizen’s right to procure information, and citizen journalism. Munif worked as a Middle School English Teacher for 6 months at an English medium school in Bangladesh. He was selected as a YES Alumni Instructor twice (2015 & 2016) at the DC orientations for YES scholars who came from more than 40 different countries. Currently, he is a consultant of North End Coffee Roasters - a roastery which pioneered the coffee culture in Bangladesh. He is also working as the Chief Operations Officer at a youth-led tech company based in Bangladesh. He is determined to work for the betterment of the society and try to bring a positive change in the world by creating a synergy between technology and different forms of arts.
Gulshan Jubaed Prince (YES 2010-2011, Bangladesh, hosted by Ayusa in Tupelo, MS) is a young enthusiastic Computer Engineer whose motivation for problem solving and process improvement has led him to be the co-founder of Techynaf. Prince wanted to be a programmer from a young age and graduated from BRAC University, Bangladesh with a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science and Engineering. He is currently working as the Program Assistant for the YES Program at iEARN-BD. Prince has created a program called Smallfoot, which is a mentorship program. As he moves further with his life and career, Prince has continuously discovered more of his capabilities and sees changes within himself everyday. Unfortunately, being a workaholic, he doesn’t get much free time for himself, however, when he does, he prefers to sleep. Prince hopes that one day all this hard work will pay off with an early retirement.
SDG 5: Gender Equality
Munif Khan (YES 2011-2012, Bangladesh, hosted by AC in Altoona, IO) is passionate about the First Amendment rights and is a strong supporter of gender equality. After the completion of his YES exchange year, he decided to continue serving the community. He has coordinated seven community service projects in Bangladesh and has been trained in three international workshops in India. His projects in Bangladesh include self defense and confidence building training for women, awareness project regarding citizen’s right to procure information, and citizen journalism. In May 2017 he was invited as a trainer for the students of Access Microscholarship Program at the American Center in Kolkata. His training session was titled, “News Report Style Storytelling.” He was later re-invited twice at the American Center to speak to the local journalists/community members on Citizen Journalism and to work as a trainer at the U.S. Consulate General Kolkata sponsored Anti-Gender Based Violence Workshop on July 20-21, 2017. He was recently invited to participate in the Tri-country (India, Nepal, and Bangladesh) Peaceniks workshop held in Kolkata, India by the U.S. Consulate General in Kolkata from February 21-24, 2018.
SDG 6: Clean Water and Sanitation
Stephane Kamtchuing Fodjo (YES 2012-2013, Cameroon, hosted by AFS in Cleveland, OH) has a dream to contribute to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, especially Good Health and Well-being, Gender Equality, Clean Water and Sanitation, and Affordable and Clean Energy. Stephane is currently studying Mechanical Engineering at the Catholic University Institute of Buea. Water is a scarce commodity at his university, and even when water is available it is not clean or ready for immediate consumption. Stephane is working to design a system that recycles and filters water. In addition to this service project, Stephane has been very involved in other initiatives at his university; he has been his class representative since the freshman level and is currently in the Student Government. He has also organised a blood drive in October 2017 since there is a lack of blood drives in Cameroon. Stephane attended the SDG Summit for West Africa in December 2017 in Ghana. In February 2018, he became a facilitator of the Girl’s Voice in Cameroon.
SDG 7: Affordable and Clean Energy
Nor-ain Kumayog (YES 2008-2009, Philippines, hosted by PAX in Lincoln, AR), is the Co-Founder of HYACRAFT and Do Good ASEAN. Nor-ain is a changemaker who always likes to contribute to the community. In 2013, Nor-ain joined Link Engage Activate and Develop where she proposed the idea of HYACRAFT - making native products out of water hyacinth to generate income for youth and unemployed mothers. Through the years, Nor-ain has been a delegate for various workshops such as Social Entrepreneurship Workshops, Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative and Global Startup Youth, which broaden her skills, experiences and network with young leaders not just through ASEAN but leaders across the Globe. She is currently working as a Client Services Executive for a trading company and has been working as Marketing Specialist for the past two years.
SDG 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth
Kalthoom Al-Khamayasi (YES 2005-2006, Oman, hosted by AYUSA in Traverse City, MI) is an economic researcher in the field of food and agricultural firms. Her journey in economics began 10 years ago when she started her BSc degree in Natural Resources Economics, followed by a job in the same field and later a MSc in Applied Economics. In addition to her studies and research, her long term goals have been shaped by several learning opportunities like YES alumni workshops and other programs around the world. Kalthoom is focused on improving future economic development opportunities for young people in her community and the country. Kalthoom co-created JISSER Internship Platform, a platform aiming to improve employment conditions especially for youth, who represent around 60% of unemployed individuals in the Middle East and North Africa region. The hope is to generate a more professional and skilled pool of talents that will be turned from being burden to a push and an incentive towards economic growth.
SDG 9: Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure
Gulshan Jubaed Prince (YES 2010-2011, Bangladesh, hosted by Ayusa in Tupelo, MS) is a young enthusiastic Computer Engineer whose motivation for problem solving and process improvement has led him to be the co-founder of Techynaf. Prince wanted to be a programmer from a young age and graduated from BRAC University, Bangladesh with a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science and Engineering. He is currently working as the Program Assistant for the YES Program at iEARN-BD. His love for spending quality time with his loved ones rivals that for developing application and software. Along with the development of various apps like DaamKoto and Amar Dhaka, he has experience working as a Software Engineer at Mayalogy Limited, a renowned startup for helping women in Bangladesh. In his presentation he will talk about Tech Solutions to Socio Economic Problems, Social Activism through Technology, Teach Through Tech, Maya Apa App, Techynaf and how they are all related and point to the SDG 9.
SDG 10: Reduced Inequalities
Priya Parkash (YES 2014-2015, Pakistan, hosted by AFS in Camarillo, CA) is a high school senior from Karachi, Pakistan. Priya has initiated several social-justice initiatives in her home country, directed towards the universal provision of education, the eradication of bullying, and gender equality. Fascinated by the plurality of religion in modern societies and saddened at the sight of the widespread religious conflict, Priya considers it her responsibility to promote interfaith harmony. As a Hindu brought up in a Christian neighborhood in a Muslim majority country, she realizes the significance of coexistence and hopes to help others realize so in her country and beyond. BUBW Pakistan and the Lantern of Faith were her first steps on this mission. Priya enjoys Mock Trial, peer tutoring, painting, and learning new languages. She has led her school’s debating society as President, the peer-tutoring program as Captain, and is learning a fourth language. Priya hopes to pursue International Relations and Economics in college.
SDG 12: Responsible Consumption and Production
Ang Zheng Feng (YES 2016-2017, Malaysia), is currently pursuing his foundation in Agricultural Science in University Putra Malaysia. To celebrate the YES 15th Anniversary, Ang and his fellow alumni organized a 15 Day Challenge to raise environmental awareness in Malaysia. This included zero waste, recycling, limiting water usage, etc. Ang was inspired to reduce waste and use environmentally friendly items when he noticed that his university had reduced the number of rubbish bins on campus. Before joining the YES program, Ang participated in International Red Cross and Red Crescent Exchange Program (2015), led a state level youth camp as the camp leader for local Red Crescent Society (2016) and took part in community services organised by the Red Crescent Society. Upon his return from the YES program, he volunteered for the YES National Selection Camp (2017). Ang will finish his foundation this May and might further study in either Dietetic and Nutrition or Environmental Science and Technology.
SDG 13: Climate Action
Lyne Chezem (YES 2013-2014, Cameroon, hosted by CIEE in Natural Bridge, VA) is currently attending a Higher Teacher Training College where she is studying to become a language teacher. In addition to education, Lyne is passionate about the environment. Lyne believes that little steps and projects can have a big impact on reversing the harm done to the environment in the past decades. Last year Lyne led an environmental project in a local primary school to teach children about climate action and the roles we can all play in conserving our environment. Lyne has been the president of the YES Alumni Association in Yaounde, Cameroon since 2015.
SDG 15: Life on Land
Bakari Iddi Mtili (YES 2011-2012, Tanzania, hosted by AFS in Kingston, NY) currently resides in Moshi-Kilimanjaro, Tanzania. He is pursuing a bachelor degree in Wildlife Management at the College of African Wildlife Management. Bakari has great visions and passion toward conserving and managing wildlife and their habitats, and his goal is to make a conducive environment for every organism. He simply loves what he does for conservation. Though he has participated in a number of community projects, he is very fond of his recent participation and accomplishment of community activities in Tanzania aiming at natural resource conservation, raising awareness, and environmental rehabilitation (such as tree planting). Bakari believes the world is being jeopardized and efforts toward conserving our planet is highly needed – and he will not be left behind in the effort to conserve our world and wildlife. Bakari still cites his YES host family, the Lindemans, for their great contributions to Bakari. Bakari says the YES program had a great impact and influence on who he is today.
SDG 16: Peace, Justice, and Strong Institutions
Two YES alumni will present on SDG 16, Aisha Munir and Adu Masir Ahmad.
Aisha Munir (YES 2010-2011, Ghana, hosted by AIFS/AYA in Florence, SC) is an undergraduate student pursuing a degree in Political Studies. Aisha helped organize a peace campaign during the 2016 elections in Ghana. In addition to her efforts towards making the world a more peace and just place, Aisha is passionate about quality education and gender equity, especially in encouraging young girls in her community to pursue a higher education. Aisha is currently doing an internship at AFS Ghana. Being on the YES program changed Aisha’s life, her perception and perspective about community proceedings. Aisha wants to share her voice and ideas to try to make a change and impact on the community.
Adu Nasir Ahmad (YES 2008-2009, Ghana, hosted by AYA/AIFS in Fort Wayne, IN) is a graduate of Accra Technical University and current board member of AFS Ghana. He is passionate about matters of democratic governance, peace, and stronger institutions – especially in encouraging young people to become interested in these matters and take a seat at the table. In 2012 Adu Nasir worked with a group of passionate community mobilizers to run a nationwide peace and democracy campaign to encourage peaceful elections and transitions of power. His work brings together community stakeholders to engage them in conflict resolution and peace sensitization exercises.
SDG 17: Partnerships for the Goals
Hazami Barmada has 13+ years of experience as a public affairs, communications and social impact strategist/consultant and social entrepreneur. She has tri-sector expertise in organizational strategy, program design and management, strategic communications and public-private partnerships. Her professional interests lie at the intersection of change management, global governance, diplomacy, innovation, new technology, social good, corporate social responsibility and development.
Hazami is the CEO of The Barmada Group, LLC and has consulted for institutions including the United Nations, United Nations Foundation, Royal Court of the Sultanate of Oman, Save the Children, DirecTV, Saudi State TV, ARAMCO Oil Co., TechGirls, and The Washington Diplomat. Most recently, she was the Coordinator for the United Nations Secretary General's World Humanitarian Summit and served as the Strategic Communications Advisor to the UN Secretary-General's Youth Envoy, namely focusing on innovative and creative partnerships around the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). She is the Founder and co-Director of the Harvard Humanitarian Leadership and Policy Study Group hosted in partnership with the Center of Public Leadership at Harvard University, which helps train and inspire 50 Harvard graduate students on more effective humanitarian response and action.
A passionate humanist, she is an advisor to philanthropic and NGO initiatives focusing on humanitarian advocacy, women and youth empowerment, diversity/inclusion, and diaspora engagement. A frequent international public speaker, her work has been featured on media including CNN, BBC, VICE, MBC, Huffington Post and Washington Post. Hazami serves as a Citizen Diplomat with the US Department of State, where she leads workshops on social innovation, entrepreneurship and leadership for government, businesses, universities and civil society around the world.
Her focus on creating solution to address complex global challenges was recognized by the Presidential Centers of four US Presidents George W. Bush, William J. Clinton, George H.W. Bush, and Lyndon B. Johnson, who in 2017 selected her as a Presidential Leadership Scholar. Under the mentorship of four presidential administrations, her Presidential Leadership Project focused on developing a comprehensive strategy for a global “empathy revolution” for social change. The project resulted in the founding and launch of the Global People's Summit, the first ever 100% global online summit in partnership with the United Nations, that took place during the United Nations General Assembly 2017 with a reach of over 84 million in 160 countries to inspire social change and progress to achieve a better world by 2030.
Hazami has a Masters in Public Administration from Harvard University, Kennedy School of Government where she was an Edward S. Mason Fellow in Public Policy and Management, served as Vice President of Professional Development at the Kennedy School Student Government, and was recipient of the 'Eric Yankah Award' and the 'Diversity and Inclusion Award for Excellence in Service'. She studied social and public policy at Georgetown University and has a BA from Rhodes College in anthropology and sociology.