MCW’S 2016 Young Leaders Program

Thirty-nine young leaders from around the world participated in MCW’s 2016 Young Leaders Program (YLP) held at New York University, New York City and Champlain College, Burlington, Vermont.

Each participant entered the retreat with a social change to address in their local communities. Topic areas included environmental issues, youth development, human rights, education, gender equality, entrepreneurship, healthcare, and intercultural dialogue. During the retreat, educators, guest speakers, and MCW board members and staff provided guidance, inspiration, and skills building workshops to assist participants to develop a vision plan to address their social change.

Participants included twenty-seven young leaders and twelve mentors, representing eighteen countries and territories around the world, including Afghanistan, Austria, Bangladesh, Colombia, Egypt, Hungary, Israel, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kosovo, Kyrgyzstan, Nepal, Pakistan, Palestine, South Africa, Sudan, the United States, and Zimbabwe.

2016 Participants

Meet the 27 participants from the 2016 YLP, and get to know their missions and visions!

If you would like to learn more about a participant’s project, connect them to an interested party, or learn how you can become involved, contact us here!

My vision is a community with the ability to access alternative and sustainable sources of energy.  My mission is to create innovative devices and products that use renewable sources of energy.

Mohammed Adam, Sudan

My vision is a community with the ability to access alternative and sustainable sources of energy.

My mission is to create innovative devices and products that use renewable sources of energy.

Azat Baatyrbekov, Kyrgyzstan

My vision is educated young, energetic, socially-oriented people in rural areas of Kyrgyzstan.

My mission is to empower those young people from rural communities by organizing information sharing platforms.

Anastasia Dona, Israel

My vision is for students in school to lead healthier lifestyles.

My mission is to provide students healthy food options in their diet by bringing more fruits and vegetables into the school’s dining room.

Ahmed Elrashed, Sudan

My vision is a well established health system and healthy communities in rural areas of Sudan, led by women.

My mission is to empower medical health students through leadership skills education and medical convoys activities.

Poonam Ghimire, Nepal

My vision is for young girls from backward communities to achieve wider platforms for empowerment and growth. My ultimate goal is to see equal, just and sustainable communities in the world.

My mission is to empower young girls to speak up for their rights and motivate others to do so via digital education and entrepreneurship in public schools in Nepal.

Noor Imran, Pakistan

My vision is a Pakistan that embraces diversity (religious, sectarian, racial, sexual) and become an active part of the global community.

My mission is to increase tolerance in youth and to economically empower them by training them in entrepreneurial skills that allow them to practice commerce in a socially responsible manner that incorporates peer education.

Dina Jaber, Palestine

My vision is enhance creativity in education through providing Palestinian students a place that offers extracurricular activities that address their creativity and critical thinking.

My mission is to develop and implement a diversity of programs and activities that enhance students’ ability to be creative, think critically, and contribute to the community development.

Savanna Kemper, USA

My vision is that troubled teens and adults will have the opportunity to direct their extra time and energy to fitness. The amount of crime, drug and alcohol use, and troublesome activity within areas that lack extracurricular activities will reduce.

My mission is by introducing non-profit gyms as well as general nutrition and fitness educational classes, the amount of crime, drug, and alcohol use, and troublesome activity within areas that lack extracurricular activities will reduce.

Kelvin Kiko, Kenya

My vision is educating Africa for future generations.

My mission is to transform the lives of African kids by educating them through a digital mobile platform.

My project is iELIMU.

Gamuchirai Mazingi, Zimbabwe

My vision is a society where girls are fully empowered to make decisions and stand up for what they believe in.

My mission is to increase awareness and involvement of girls on the issues of gender based violence, child marriages, and empowerment.

Sanzhar Mokenov, Kyrgyzstan

My vision is for women to be given a free will in all of their actions.

My mission is to establish a course of sessions which will be based on jurisdiction and law, to educate men and women of the basic rights women possess.

Vika Nikelo, South Africa

My vision is to see youth from previously disadvantaged communities of South Africa that realizes their potential and use resources that are at their disposal to devise a healthy and quality lifestyle.

My mission is to provide young people with the resources and support that they require in order to devise a successful, healthy, and quality lifestyle.

Fanice Nyatigo, Kenya

My vision is for a community that understands and appreciates the importance of prenatal care during a woman’s pregnancy.

My mission is to increase awareness on important care information and possible danger signs during pregnancy by leveraging the high mobile phone penetration in Kenya.

My project is MamaTips.

Lwazi Pakade, South Africa

My vision is a South Africa where everyone, regardless of their socio-economic background, can have equal access to University education, where the child of the Farmer can attend the same University as the child of the farm worker.

My mission is to create an academic tutoring program for students who are in high school looking to go to university is one of our main priorities. Moreover, our plan is to utilise university students and their skills to help out in these schools, which are mostly situated in poor underprivileged communities.

My project is Each One, Teach One.

Isabella Possu, Colombia

My vision is for young students from the public sector to open doors and minds through art and foreign languages.

My mission is to inspire young Colombians to learn art and foreign languages

Armir Prenaj, Kosovo

My vision is that children of Klina city are motionally and physically healthy.

My mission is to create a place where children of Klina have an opportunity to be exposed to outdoor activities, social awareness, and emotional intelligence.

Shahed Qaddoura, Palestine

My vision is a self-sustaining, high-educated, and well-organized Palestinian woman.

My mission is for each Palestinian woman to have the needed knowledge, skills, and resources to sculpt a more sustainable future for herself and her community.

Mustafa Shirzad, Afghanistan

My vision is an active and development youth community after school for students.

My mission is to create social and extracurricular activities for high school students.

Johannes Steiner, Austria

My vision is to establish a sustainable world for future generations, where youth feel empowered and comfortable in their own communities.

My mission is to use art to share Austrian culture to
the global community and to hare global culture to the Austrian people.

Adel Sultanbekova, Kyrgyzstan

My vision is a community in which youth is inspired for growth and empowered with the needed knowledge for self development.

My mission is to provide high school students in Kyrgyzstan with opportunities through leadership workshops and mentorships.

Ifreet Taheea, Bangladesh

My vision is exposure to international social practices while sticking to one’s own roots.

My mission is to equip communities of Bangladesh with an open mind set in order to show them that caring about the society is a global traits through specially designed programs.

Chaz Vest, USA

My vision is a world in which volunteers have the ability to collaborate seamlessly and internationally, engage in interesting and productive dialogue, and realize the value of combining travel and science.

My mission is the create a web society in which international volunteers can locate service opportunities worldwide, spread wisdom and discuss their service experiences, while staying up to date on service-related news.

Nesma Wagih, Egypt

My vision is a community where women’s rights are protected.

My mission is to initiate awareness campaigns to teach women to stand for their rights by enhancing communication skills, and motivating authorities to respond to any violence towards women.

Adoni Williams, USA

My vision is that young women around the globe are empowered and will rise together in order to live equally amongst men.

My mission is to develop confidence and critical leadership skills in young women around the world.

Valentina Zavala-Arbelaez, USA

My vision is an expansion of technology in high school classrooms in order to reduce paper consumption.

My mission is to provide tablets to children of low income families and enforce technological equality among students.

Elton Zefi, Kosovo

My vision is to see young people in my community more active, healthy, and stronger.

My mission is to help young people with sport activities and instilling in them the value of respect, teamwork, and discipline.


The 2016 YLP welcomed eleven mentors, and one alumni who served as a mentor to all the mentors.

Sayid Abdullaev, Kyrgyzstan/USA



Kawthar Abuzarour, Palestine

My vision is for all youth in Palestine from an impoverished community where they are currently unable to afford school to complete their education.

My mission is the empower and motivate impoverished families for education, and make a change in their lives by songs and charity cards.

Timurlan Alagushov, Kyrgyzstan/Kazakhstan

My vision is youth living in peace and self-expression friendly environment.

My mission is to promote peace and self-expression among young population through the art of dance by using IT technologies and implementing available dance classes.

My project is Let’s Dance NGO.

Haneen Bader, Palestine



Eszter Baneth, Hungary/Israel



Cholpon Erkinova, Kyrgyzstan

My vision is for children in orphanages to be empowered to develop their leadership skills and express their talents.

My mission is to create a mentoring program which helps children to develop their talents and potentials.

Inbar Fruchsad, Israel/Austria



Leon Gojani, Kosovo

My vision is for young people who are able to listen actively and develop the steps of successful communication.

My mission is to create a program for high school students in order to raise awareness about the importance of successful communication and develop their communication skills.

Taghreed Hassan, Egypt

My vision is a sustainable and clean Egypt with no air pollution or traffic jams.

My mission is to create a campaign that will promote bicycling in Egypt.

Cody Jacobs, USA



Nyameka Mguzulo, South Africa

My vision is a social movement to transform education in South Africa’s marginalized communities.

My mission is to mobilize activists, high school alumni organizations, teachers, policy makers, and corporate South Africa to create a new model of education that will provide high quality education to young people from marginalized communities in South Africa.

Doaa Takroori, Palestine