Two young Rwandans will on 29th June receive a Queen’s Young Leaders Award from the British monarch Elizabeth II.
They are part of 60 inspiring young people from all over the Commonwealth who will be rewarded for their dedication to drive change in their communities and beyond.
The Rwandan nominees Yvette Ishimwe, aged 20, who is involved in reducing the burden on women and children responsible for collecting water and improving access to safe water supplies and Kellya Uwiragiye, aged 26, who works to improve access to services and education for deaf people.
Before receiving their Queen’s Young Leaders Award at Buckingham Palace, the winners will visit the British Prime Minister at 10 Downing Street, as well as take part in masterclasses at the BBC World Service and the UK headquarters of global social media company Facebook. They will also meet the Commonwealth Secretary-General, take part in workshops at the University of Cambridge, meet senior executives from some of the UK’s leading organisations and visit projects that are changing the lives of vulnerable people in the UK.
The winners were selected through a competitive process where thousands of young people from all over the Commonwealth applied to be a Queen’s Young Leader.
“I am delighted to have been selected as a Queen's Young Leader and this award will help me to generate support for a pre-school centre for deaf children across Rwanda,” Uwiragiye said.
“The Queen’s Young Leaders of 2017 are doing truly remarkable work within their communities,” said Dr Astrid Bonfield, Chief Executive of The Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust. “Their actions are having a positive impact not only on those around them but also by setting in motion positive change that will last for generations to come.”
“The residential programme is an opportunity for the 2017 Queen’s Young Leaders to come together for the first time, to foster partnerships and share ideas about how they can work together as a group to improve people’s lives all over the Commonwealth,” she added. “We are delighted that these young people are being recognised for their life-changing work by Her Majesty The Queen and we hope that their time in the UK will inspire and enable them to pursue their work for others on an ever greater scale.”
The Queen’s Young Leaders programme was launched in 2014 and will come to a close next year. The application process for the 2018 awards opens on 29th June. Applicants should be aged between 18 and 29, be citizens of a Commonwealth country and have proven experience of working to improve their communities locally, regionally or at a national level.
More details can be found at www.queensyoungleaders.com.