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Two Indians and an Indian- American selected for the UN Young Leaders for Sustainable Development Goals

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Two Indians and an Indian- American are among 17 people selected for the inaugural class of UN Young Leaders for Sustainable Development Goals for their leadership and contribution to end poverty, fight inequality and injustice, and tackle climate change by 2030.

UN Young Leaders:-

  • The United Nations launched a new initiative to recognize exceptional young people who are leaders in the effort to end poverty, combat climate change and reduce inequalities. This initiative is spear-headed by the Office of the UN Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth, the UN Young Leaders Initiative will recognize on an annual basis 17 young leaders who are driving change to help realize the Sustainable Development Goals.UN 17 Young Leaders
  • The Young Leaders initiative will showcase the outstanding leadership of young people in putting the world on a more sustainable path. From food to fashion to finance, the Young Leaders will come from many different backgrounds, represent every region in the world and help activate millions of young people in support of the Goals.
  • This move unearth young people between the ages of 18 -30 from around the world, and across multiple sectors, who are leading positive change towards a sustainable future.

Today, the world is home to the largest generation of youth in history, with 1.2 billion aged 15-24 worldwide. What’s more, this number is expected to continue to grow: between 2015 and 2030 alone, around 1.9 billion young people are projected to turn 15 years old.  In order to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals, we must engage a generation of young people who know about the Goals, care about their success and actively works toward their realization.

UN Young Leaders were selected based on:

  1. Their demonstrated achievements in promoting and advancing sustainable development;
  2. The ability to command an audience, influence their contemporaries and inspire their constituents;
  3. Their personal influence within their respective fields and reputation for inclusive and innovative leadership;
  4. Their demonstrated integrity, commitment to the SDGs and core values of the UN.

Three Indians @ UN Young Leaders List:-

Trisha Shetty:-

Trisha Shetty, 25, is the founder and CEO of ‘SheSays’, a platform she launched last year to educate, rehabilitate and empower women to take direct action against sexual assault in India.

  • ‘SheSays’ uniquely provides tools and resources for women, including access to legal, medical and psychological support. Shetty and her team work with established institutions across the education, entertainment and healthcare sectors to build a network of support that recognizes all levels of sexual abuse and provides the necessary means to fight it.

Ankit Kawatra :-

Ankit Kawatra, 24 founded ‘Feeding India’ in 2014 to address the issues of hunger and food waste, particularly by distributing excess food from weddings and parties to the needy. Kawatra’s organisation has a network of over 2,000 volunteers in 28 cities in India for rescuing and redistributing excess food to help feed people in need.

  • The organisation has served over one million meals to date and aims to reach 100 million by 2020. Kawatra quit his corporate job at 22 and decided to focus on tackling food waste and hunger in India when at an Indian wedding he was “appalled” by the amount of food going waste in a country where 194 million .

Karan Jerath :-

Indian-American Karan Jerath, 19, invented a ground- breaking, subsea wellhead capping device. Mr Jerath, a scientist and innovator, was born in India, raised in Malaysia and moved to the US at the age of 13.

  • When the BP oil spill happened 30 minutes away from his home in Texas, Mr Jerath was determined to take action and realized that much smaller spills are happening on a daily basis and negatively affecting our oceans and environment and he eventually found a solution.