19 Africans To Win The Queen’s Young Leaders Awards


60 people from the Commonwealth are being recognized by the Queen of England for their exceptional leadership in their communities, and among them are nineteen Africans.

The Queen’s Young Leaders Awards is a collaboration between The Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust, Comic Relief and The Royal Commonwealth Society. The award is given in honor of The Queen’s 60 years of service to the Commonwealth at the time of her Diamond Jubilee.

Each year from 2014 to 2018, 60 exceptional young people will be selected to receive the Queen’s Young Leaders Award and become ‘Queen’s Young Leaders’ – one for every year that The Queen had served as Head of the Commonwealth at the time of her Diamond Jubilee.

This year’s winners who are aged between 18 and 29 are being celebrated for impacting their communities positively. The Africans nominated are;

Moitshepi Matsheng

Age: 22 (Botswana)

As a result of losing her mother to AIDS at a tender age, Moitshepbecame committed to educate students about the illness. The group which is called Young 1ove has worked with over 32,000 students and has received a mandate from the Ministry of Education to reach every girl in Botswana.

David Morfaw

Age: 22 (Cameroon)

David grew up in a poor home, although he had health problems like dyslexia, he started a business at the age of 8 selling water. In 2011 he created Poutl-Vault, an enterprise that supplies chickens as interest-free loans to women and young people. The owners can choose to sell their produce to pay for the chickens. He also created a barter system to enable farmers pay for their children’s education using crops.

Paul-Miki Akpablie

 Age: 22 (Ghana)

Paul-Miki is the founder and CEO of Kadi Energy. Kardi Energy aims to reduce the costs of charging electonical appliances.

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Alex Mativo,

Age: 21 (Kenya).

Alex impacted his community positively by dealing with environmental problems in order to increase life expectancy and reduce illnesses caused by environmental issues. He also started E-lab, where he turns electronic wastes into creative art or fashion products.

Peris Bosire,  

Age: 24 (Kenya) –

Peris transformed farming in his community. Upon graduation from the university, he co-founded FarmDrive, which helps to link farmers and financial institutions, Because of FarmDrive, farmers now have access to good financial services. FarmDrive has a record of 800 users and 300 more are expected to start in the coming months.

Susan Mueni Waita,

Age: 21 (Kenya)

Susan volunteers as the field coordinator for the girls’ programme of an NGO called Caroline for Kibera. The organization also promotes the education of young grils about sexual and reproductive health.

Maletsabisa Molapo,

Age: 28 (Lesotho)

The engineer who is the leader of the Her Chance To Be Foundation has helped young girls from rural areas attend top shools with scholarships and, mentoring.

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Asante Mzungu,

Age: 18 (Malawi)

From distributing stationery and uniforms to more than 2000 students to helping people from a disadvantaged background acquire entrepreneurial and leadership skills, Asante is committed to the youth of his community.

Madalo Banda,

Age: 21 (Malawi)

Madalo is  Through Loud Ink which she co-founded, Madalo is raising awareness of HIV/AIDS, child abuse and other social issues through writing.

Deegesh Maywah,

Age: 27 (Mauritius)

After seeing someone with a disability working in the UK, Deegesh felt inspired to return home, where he co-founded Employ-Ability. This organization helps people with disabilities to be a  part of the work force. It has so far helped 186 people to work and a fiurther 250 disabled to live independently.

Drucila Meireles,

Age: 28 (Mozambique)

Drucila is the Programmes Officer for LeMuSICa. It is an NGO which advocates for the right of women and youth, and also victims of domestic violence.

Imrana Alhaji Buba,

Age: 23 (Nigeria)

Imrana contributed to his community by enabling community building and youth education programmes. He also offers training for the young and unemployed.

Olanrewaju Adeloye,

Age: 23 (Nigeria)

The medical physiology graduate used his experience in health care to start SaferMum which uses mobile services to bridge the gap between pregnant women in rural communities and pregnancy health care. The service has benefitted more than 900 women in the community.

Olumide Femi Makanjuola,

Age: 28 (Nigeria)

Olumide is an LGBTI+ advocate. He offers sexual health and human right education to LGBTI+ persons in Nigeria.

Nancy Sibo,

Age:  22 (Rwanda)

Nancy developed Mobile Cow, an application that helps livestock farmers to monitor the estrous cycles of their cows thereby improving their market productivity. She also trains farmers on agroecology  (sustainable agriculture). She’s the co-founder of the Miheha bag initiative as well, where recycled plastic straws are used to create fashion products.

Angelique Pouponneau,

Age:  25 (Seychelles)

Angelique is the co-founder of Small Islands Developing States (SIDS) Youth AIMS Hub in Seychelles. The programme promotes sustainable development and works to preserve the environment.

Howard Nelson-Williams,

Age: 27 (Sierra Leone)

Howard helped to create a national medical students association in Sierra Leone (SLEMSA), which aims to provide a forum for students to promote health in their communities. Also, since the outbreak of Ebola he has been researching and working to prevent the spread of the disease, and rebuilding the country’s health care system.

Lethabo Ashleigh Letube

Age: 19 (South Africa)

Lethabo is part of Project Playground, which is involved in after-school recreation. She is also the chairwoman of a violence and crime intervention initiative called Great Corner Lugna Gatan.

Jessica Dewhurst,

Age: 23 (South Africa)

Jessica has been involved in various organizations that help refugees and young people, and children with HIV/AIDS in the past. She co-founded The Social Justice & Advocacy Desk for South Central Africa in 2013 which helps young people find employment.

Rachel Nungu,

Age: 27 (Tanzania)

Rachel is a doctor and the national coordinator of a medical programme to help children who are born with clubfoot. The programme uses a non-surgical method called the Ponseti method to treat patients. She has also helped spread awareness and worked with her community to improve its health care.

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