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Saturday, June 15, 2024

One Young World Leader Ella Robertson McKay Advises Youth: Use Your Skills

It certainly seems the world is rife with complex challenges — but Ella Robertson McKay and One Young World are empowering youth to drive positive change through the chaos. According to Robertson McKay, it all comes down to tapping into one’s talents and bringing those strengths into play.

“For me, I think it’s a case of using your skills — a respectful ‘stay in your lane’ approach,” she says. “Identify what you’re good at and combine it with your passion. If your passion is women’s health care, and your skill set is journalism, combine those, because movements desperately need skilled people.”

The One Young World managing director adds that it’s all about getting involved when the opportunity presents itself. “Join existing movements where possible,” Ella Robertson McKay emphasizes.

“Never underestimate the importance of bringing people together,” Robertson McKay said on the “School of Justice” YouTube channel. “Bring people together in a way that promotes dialogue, where people will want to listen to each other.”

In order to do that effectively, Robertson McKay recommends doing your homework. “Do your research into what makes good meetings, what makes good discussions,” she suggests. “[Define] how you can facilitate things so people don’t feel defensive, so they can be vulnerable [and] honest. When you bring people together in a truly vulnerable setting, it’s amazing how on the same page people often are. The power of convening is something that we’re really passionate about at One Young World.”

By harnessing their inherent strengths, young individuals can contribute meaningfully to the movements that resonate with their values and aspirations.

Robertson McKay is so focused on investing in youth leadership that she co-wrote a book.

As a co-author of the activism handbook How To Make a Difference, I am passionate about inspiring positive change and equipping young people with the tools to create impact.” Ella Robertson McKay shared on LinkedIn.

Initiatives One Young World Offers To Educate and Elevate

Whether One Young World is hosting summits, providing peer-to-peer mentorships, moderating panel discussions, or organizing sessions with actress and humanitarian Emma Watson, the U.K.-based organization is constantly pitching new ideas and dreaming up novel ways for up-and-coming changemakers to collaborate with each other and established world leaders for a more promising tomorrow.

From tackling climate change to promoting social justice, these fresh-faced trailblazers are confronting the world’s greatest tests head-on. The nonprofit equips its ambassadors with the tools and networking opportunities to amplify their impact.

One Young World launched its own academy with courses to help young leaders hone their skills. Some classes have concentrated on decreasing carbon emissions, promoting peace, combating hunger, providing menstrual products, and achieving equality in the workplace.

“It’s no wonder that traditional education and assessment methods are being undercut by the emergence of [artificial intelligence] technologies such as Chat GPT — they always relied on regurgitation of information, which was never the most meaningful way to learn,” Ella Robertson McKay shared on Linkedin.

“One Young World Academy combines knowledge and skill building through real-world experience in order to help learners develop — stay tuned for some exciting developments from One Young World Academy.”

How One Young World Ambassadors Are Applying New Skills

One Young World, known for its vibrant annual summits where solutions to pressing global issues are discussed and devised, has been a catalyst for nurturing skills ranging from digital literacy to strategic sustainability practices. The unique blend of mentorship, workshops, and networking opportunities offered at OYW events empowers ambassadors to return to their communities equipped with practical tools and an enhanced vision for change.

One Young World’s Theory of Change underscores its dedication to empowering budding innovators, equipping them with the tools and support necessary to create a more sustainable and equitable world. Deeply invested in our collective future, these ambitious individuals possess a unique understanding of the needs and challenges faced by their peers and communities. Simultaneously, they’re well positioned to harness the potential of contemporary technology and paradigms.

One Young World ambassadors are driving impactful initiatives in every country around the globe. In April, One Young World highlighted several, including Domenica Cobo Flandoli, the co-founder and executive director of JuntasXEllas, an Ecuador-based nonprofit improving women’s socioeconomic and political empowerment.

At the 2023 One Young World Summit in Belfast, Northern Ireland, Cobo Flandoliengaged with fellow ambassadors, gaining insights into project development and best practices to ensure their initiatives had the most significant impact possible.

The JuntasXEllas online platform provides complimentary mental health services to women and girls in Ecuador. This year, it served 700 women and girls with mental health support.

Shah Rafayat Chowdhury attended the One Young World Summit Manchester 2022 in England. As the co-founder of Footsteps Bangladesh, an organization devoted to improving community development issues through sustainable programs to solve social challenges, he has impacted 544,356 people to date, forever changing lives in Bangladesh. During his time at the One Young World Summit, Rafayat Chowdhury said he learned how essential taking a global approach can be when attempting to implement change on a smaller scale.

“It was honestly a dream come true moment for me last year because One Young World was able to achieve a dream of mine, which I thought I would never have the opportunity, which was to fly the Bangladesh flag on the global stage,” RafayatChowdhury said. “So I would wholeheartedly thank One Young World for giving me that opportunity.”

Indonesian Dicky Dwi Alfandy shared that he gained some priceless experience at that gathering.

“The biggest impact of One Young World for me has been the platform it represents,” explained Dwi Alfandy, who started Marine Debris Warrior, a nonprofit aiding coastal communities in Indonesia by providing job opportunities through ocean cleanup. “It has given me a wonderful network with social activists working on environmental and other issues. It gives me courage and motivation to do so much more.”

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