Hurford Youth Fellowship 10th Anniversary!
For 10 years the World Movement for Democracy has been empowering the next generation of democracy advocates. With support from the Hurford Foundation, over 30 fellows have participated in the Fellowship Program from more than 25 countries.
To celebrate, we highlight the success of our fellows. Learn how the Fellows are advancing democracy in their community!
Risham Waseem, Pakistan
Director, Maati TV — Hurford Youth Fellow Class of 2018
“The Hurford Youth fellowship provided me with a global perspective that helped me discover new and innovative approaches to discussing democracy and civic action with the youth of my country. After completing the fellowship I went on to work as a communication strategist for the Special Rapporteur of Freedom of Assembly and Association while also running my own web platform, Maati TV, that aims at creating safe spaces for critical discourse on themes of human rights, civic education, gender and tolerance. This fellowship has been a life changing opportunity that has helped me understand the nuances of democracy promotion and equipped me with the mindset needed to work in a field that is often riddled with many challenges.”
Ateki Seta Caxton, Cameroon
Executive Director, Network for Solidarity, Empowerment and Transformation for All — Hurford Youth Fellow Class of 2016
“The Hurford Youth Fellowship gave me a foundation as well as a platform to build personal capacity and develop skills and networks which eventually had a decisive bearing on the work I do within the civic space in Cameroon and Africa. This fellowship equips youths with the ability to be effective in any given context underscoring its worldwide relevance. If anything, the support dedicated by the Hurford Foundation to this fellowship has taught us a great lesson that through solidarity, we can effectively gift communities around the world with a new generation of change makers who would go on to address their challenges and create a positive impact.”
Check out NewSETA’s Work Here.
Marr Nyang, The Gambia
Executive Director, Gambia Participates — Hurford Youth Fellow of 2021
“My participation in the Hurford Fellowship was a game changer! The fellowship provided me the opportunity to broaden my knowledge in Transitional Justice. I learned the about different Transitional Justice experiences from around the world, which I now use in my advocacy and engagements in The Gambia. The Hurford Fellowship also provided me the opportunity to bring young politicians and advocates in my country and other activists around the world to define the future of democracy for young people.”
Check out The Gambia Participates.
Saba Ismail, Pakistan
Founder, Aware Girls — Hurford Youth Fellow of 2012
“I want to celebrate ten years of the Hurford Fellowship because the fellowship believed in the power of young people, especially the power of young women, to strengthen democracy. The fellowship was an amazing opportunity that equipped me and my organization, Aware Girls, with the skills and tools to empower young women for a change. With the skills gained, the same year, my organization organized Pakistan’s first-ever women’s election observation team to monitor elections which was a steppingstone in strengthening women’s participation in democracy in Pakistan.”
Check out Aware Girls.
Najmin Kamilsoy, Azerbaijan
Researcher, Baku Research Institute — Hurford Youth Fellow of 2017
“The Hurford Youth Fellowship at the World Movement for Democracy was a unique opportunity to develop knowledge, get acquainted with existing practices on advancing democracy, and build global connections with like-minded young people. Moreover, it helped me to get insights into the challenges and best practices of pro-democracy youth activists in different parts of the world – new perspectives that we often miss in our non-democratic countries. Building on experiences gained during the fellowship, also embarked on academic research on civil society development and organizational behavior under challenging political settings. Currently, with a group of young experts, researchers, and practitioners, we are setting up a think tank in Baku with a mission to support public participation, especially that of youth, in policy processes.”
Check out Najmin’s work here.
Anita Mitic, Serbia
Activist — Hurford Youth Fellow of 2016
“I started my fellowship as an activist, but I finished it as a leader. It helped me in developing my leadership skills, understanding the world, and boosting my confidence – which is, later I realized, very important for young woman activists! The Hurford Fellowship changed my life and the way I see my role in this world. It also permanently made me enthusiastic about international affairs and democracy. Even 10 years later, I still find my time with the World Movement valuable in my work.”
Learn more about Anita’s story here.
Nishchhal Kharal, Nepal
Founder, Freedom Studio – Hurford Youth Fellow of 2021
“The Hurford Youth Fellowship encouraged me to take on challenges in expanding my activism journey in a new direction. During the fellowship in 2021, I launched a new initiative named ‘Freedom Studio’ which is developing as a creative space for young people to explore their artistic activism endeavors. To date, we have worked with more than 20 artists and 500 youths in Nepal to enhance and expand the freedom and justice movements”
Check out Nish work here.
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