More than 60% of people who live in the Commonwealth are under the age of 30. This is the largest youth population the world has ever seen. In partnership with Comic Relief, The Royal Commonwealth Society and the University of Cambridge Institute of Continuing Education, we are working to discover, support and celebrate young people from across the Commonwealth. The Queen’s Young Leaders programme will help to transform the lives of young people through Awards to individuals and grants to youth-led and focused organisations.
The Queen’s Young Leaders Awards
Each year for four years the programme honours 60 exceptional young people from across the Commonwealth with a Queen’s Young Leaders Award. These inspirational leaders are working on a wide variety of important issues including tackling climate change, providing education for girls and improving maternal health.
Each year, 60 Queen's Young Leaders Award winners:
- Receive their Award from Her Majesty The Queen at Buckingham Palace.
- Take part in a year-long online leadership course from The University of Cambridge Institute of Continuing Education.
- Are paired with a mentor to help them to achieve their ambitions.
- Come to the UK for a week-long residential week that includes workshops with prominent businesses and social enterprises, and meetings with high-profile leaders.
By the end of the four-year programme, an exceptional cohort of young leaders will have worked together to create a strong youth network, spanning the Commonwealth.
Queen's Young Leaders Grants
The Queen’s Young Leaders grants support projects from every region of the Commonwealth that place young people at the heart of their communities.
Our vision is a Commonwealth where young people are better qualified, can secure sustainable employment, have access to job training, and are equipped to create thriving businesses. We want to help create an environment where young people are able to articulate their needs in order to influence key decision makers.
In 2015, grants were awarded to youth-led organisations in Bangladesh, Jamaica, Solomon Islands, the UK and Zambia. In 2016 we included funding for organisations working in Sierra Leone.
This week reminded me that the Queen’s Young Leaders Award in not as much about recognition as it is about a call to higher responsibility – responsibility to leadership, responsibility to foster opportunities for thousands of youth in my country and region, and across the Commonwealth. I was inspired and informed towards many new ideas that I know will change my life and enable me to do so much more in the world.
Maletsabisa Molapo, Lesotho
I learnt so much. I can’t wait to go home and implement everything I have learnt. This was the best experience of my life! I am committed to this programme and legacy and committed to working hard throughout my life to make you all proud.
Jessica Dewhurst, South Africa
I have met, and talked at length to, various influential leaders from business, philanthropy, government and media. I have taken away teachings that I will convert into resources to be used back in my home country. This has been life changing.
Brad Olsen, New Zealand
I just want to say this was the most beautiful experience of my life. I loved it and loved each and every moment. I would like to thank Her Majesty for impaction young people and special thanks to each and every member of the Queen’s Young Leaders team who spend their days and nights to organise this programme in the best possible way.
Zainab Bibi, Pakistan
It has been amazing to meet all the young people and understand more about their projects and the way I can implement my ideas in more structured and creative ways. The Queen’s Young Leaders programme Residential Week has been a brilliant way to meet people from all across the Commonwealth. It helped me create and discover a global network, which I will carry with me throughout my life.
Sara Malliue, Malta