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About

Last September, the United Nations announced the inaugural class of the Young Leaders for the Sustainable Development Goals – 17 young change-makers whose leadership is catalyzing the achievement of the Goals. From food to fashion to finance, the Young Leaders come from many different backgrounds, represent every region in the world and help activate young people in support of the Goals. 

Convened by the Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth, these Young Leaders are recognized for their leadership and contribution to a more sustainable world. The Young Leaders come together as a community to support efforts to engage young people in the realization of the SDGs both through strategic opportunities with the UN and through their existing initiatives, platforms and networks. Young Leaders will be expected to actively support one or more of the following objectives:

  • Advocate for the Goals, in ways most accessible and relatable to young people across different contexts;
  • Promote innovative ways of engaging their audiences and peers in the advocacy and realization of the Goals;
  • Contribute to a brain trust of young leaders supporting the UN and partners for key moments and initiatives related to the Goals.

Each year, a new “Class” will be nominated through an open call for nominations and assessed according to robust selection criteria by a diverse selection committee. 

The Young Leaders Initiative is powered by the Office of the UN Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth, in collaboration with our amazing partners. The Initiative is part of the Global Youth Partnership for Sustainable Development Goals, launched in 2015 and housed in the Envoy's Office.