Breakout session | Stage 3

Host: The Big 6 Youth Organizations

Big 6 Youth Organizations will host a youth-led discussion considering what it takes to mobilize young people at scale in the context of the Decade of Action. A mistake made by the development community is designing campaigns aimed at young people without actually engaging young people in the design. The truth is young people do want to achieve the SDGs, as they care deeply about social causes, but their insights and experiences must be heard if we are to achieve greater impact together. The Big 6 Youth Organizations have over a century of experience activating young people at the grassroots level.  They exist in almost every corner of the world and have understood how to engage young people from many backgrounds and bring them into the conversation to form networks of local youth-led movements. This session will share insights on how to mobilize a generation of young people for the SDGs



Willy Xiao
Youth Representative, World Organization of the Scout Movement

Willy is a strong believer in young peoples’ influence in addressing some of the most pressing issues of our time. In high school, he earned the highest award in Scouting in the United States and then went on to Harvard University for his Bachelors of Arts in Computer Science, where he also provided legal services to disprivileged individuals. Willy currently works in the tech industry, focusing on new-product development, software, and data analysis. For the past 7 years, Willy was part of the Dream Team, a youth advisory council to the executives of the 24th World Scout Jamboree, which brought over 45,000 young people from around the world to West Virginia, USA for 12 days packed with adventure, friendship, and leadership activities.

Ana Clara Marti
Education specialist | Board Member in YMCA Uruguay | UN Advocacy officer | Coordinator of the Regional Committee on the 2030 Agenda of LACA-YMCA
Ana Clara has a degree in Education, a postgraduate degree in Educational Management and is currently studying a master's degree in Direction of International Cooperation Projects. Since she was 15 years old, she has worked with young people, through volunteering and participation. She has been involved in several youth empowerment spaces and processes in Uruguay and Latin America. Currently, she works in an education institution supporting the personal growth process of 17- and 18-year-old students. She is a member of the Board of Directors of the Young Men's Christian Association (YMCA) of Uruguay and was selected as an Advocacy Officer at the United Nations Advocacy Group of the World Alliance of YMCAs. In this role, one of the main purposes is to make the voice of young people heard at the United Nations, as well as to identify priority areas where policies on youth, employment and gender need to be developed, and to contribute to the outreach and work for the achievement of the goals of the 2030 Agenda.

Meti Gemechu
Youth Leadership Development Programme Coordinator, YWCA Ethiopia
Meti is a talented young woman leader who graduated from Future Talent Academy and has been working passionately in the social sector since she was a young girl. She is currently the Youth Leadership Development Programme Coordinator at YWCA Ethiopia where she works in advocacy, movement building and youth development initiatives. Her passion for helping people and civic leadership is matched with her experience working as a youth champion on the State of the African Women campaigns. Through her engagement she has been able to be part of the leadership committee of the newly founded Anti-FGM Youth Network in Ethiopia. Passionate about community development and advocacy, she has seized many opportunities to participate in national and international platforms, to speak out for her generation and amplify the voices of the women in Ethiopia. She is also representing World YWCA in the Beijing +25 Youth Journey Mapping initiative.
Chamathya Fernando
WAGGGS Youth representative | Gender equality activist | Girl Guide in Sri Lanka
Chamathya Fernando is a youth activist and gender equality advocate from Sri Lanka. She is a former World Board Member of the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS), the youngest to hold this position.
Working as a marketing professional, Chamathya dedicates her volunteer time serving as a member of the UN Women Beijing +25 Global Youth Task Force leading the Generation Equality campaign. Chamathya is also a global facilitator of the WAGGGS Stop The Violence campaign, where she has educated young people on gender violence in Sri Lanka and Bangladesh. In 2017, she was recognized as one of the 10 Global Emerging Young Leaders by the US State Department for her work on empowering girls and young women against gender-based violence.
Melanie Tran
The Duke of Edinburgh's International Award -Youth Representative | UX Designer | Social Entrepreneur
Named one of the Top 100 Women of Influence 2019 by the Australian Financial Review,
Melanie Tran is a designer, an innovator, an activist, a social entrepreneur. Melanie’s work as a User Experience (UX) Designer and social entrepreneur has been recognised internationally, including being named the winner of the Laureate International Universities Global Here for Good Award 2018 .
Melanie’s lived-experience, developed skills and knowledge allow for her work to span the disability, health and technology sectors. With over eight years’ experience, and through her role as a UX Designer at Hireup, Melanie specializes in bringing together the worlds of business, design and social impact.
Melanie is also the first person in the world with a neuromuscular condition to receive The Duke of Edinburgh's International Award for Bronze, Silver and Gold.

September 24, 14:30
14:30 — 15:15EST(GMT-4) (45′)

Activism, Partnerships, Youth

| Host: The Big 6 Youth Organizations |, Ana Clara Marti (World YMCA), Chamathya Fernando (WAGGGS), Melanie Tran (Youth Representative), Meti Gemechu (World YWCA), Willy Xiao (World Organization of the Scout Movement)