Twenty-three-year old activist Alejandra Acosta visits a local Spanish high school to involve students in the fight against human trafficking. Thousands of miles away, Neeshad Sharif gathers young climate advocates at a meeting of the Qatari Arab Youth Climate Movement chapter. They are changemakers and members of the United Nations Foundation’s new +SocialGood Connector class, which consists of 13 leaders dedicated to local change and global progress.
+SocialGood is a UN Foundation-led community of changemakers who connect with each other, share ideas, and advance solutions to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the world’s plan to create a fair future for people and the planet by 2030.
At the core of the community are its Connectors. These local leaders bring diverse voices and perspectives from around the world to our shared efforts to reach the SDGs and solve global problems. They also lead projects, events, and communications to advance SDG solutions. Over the next two years, the new class will work to connect their movements and support broader global progress. Sign up for the +SocialGood community newsletter to follow their work and for ways to get involved.
This year’s new class of +SocialGood Connectors joins a community of more than two dozen changemakers, activists, and entrepreneurs hard at work to deliver progress across the world – from Brazil to Ghana to India.
We are at an important crossroads for global progress, and the work of local leaders could not be important. The SDGs call for the end of poverty, a halt to climate change, the eradication of hunger, and many other transformational achievements. No one country or sector can achieve them alone. We need local leaders like the +SocialGood Connectors to get to the future we want.
New +SocialGood Connector Ashley Bass, who works on improving education in underserved communities in the United States, shared why she believes the SDGs are important, saying: “Complex problems call for complex solutions. The challenges facing the world are intertwined and require a commitment to step up our actions. The SDGs should be of high importance to all; as they provide a shared blueprint and an urgent call for action by all countries who are organized under this global partnership.”
Follow the +SocialGood community on Twitter and meet the 2019-2020 class of +SocialGood Connectors:
- Abraham Ologundudu, Nigeria
Abraham Ologundudu is the co-founder and executive director of Social Good Lagos, a local chapter of +SocialGood that brings together professionals and thought leaders who are dedicated to using new media and digital technologies to enhance social good initiatives through partnerships, collaborations, and innovation. He passionately creates platforms to inspire local action and innovation towards the SDGs.
- Alejandra Acosta, Spain
Alejandra Acosta is a social worker and entrepreneur who specializes in gender equity. She is the founder of Break The Silence, a non-profit that fights against human trafficking in Spain. She is a past TEDx speaker and is passionate about social justice and sustainability.
- Ashley Bass, United States
Ashley Bass is a design and technology advocate who supports and develops K-16 education and city-wide programs for underserved communities. Her mission is to work in the area of education within urban public sectors: to help create, develop, and maintain programs and initiatives for social good.
- Clarisse Joy Mañabat, Philippines
Clarisse Joy Manabat is the co-founder of Green Rubber – Grub Footwear, a social enterprise which upcycles scrap tires and old jeans to turn them into slippers. The company also aims to provide economic empowerment to persons with disabilities.
- David Connor, United Kingdom
David Connor is the founder of 2030hub, the world’s first recognised UN Local2030 Hub. His mission is to stimulate business and city-level social good through entrepreneurship, communications, and collaboration. Other successes include the creation of the charitable foundation at Everton Football Club and managing the England amputee football squad. David is also a UK B Leader, supporting B Corp growth and certification to encourage businesses to measure what matters.
- Federico Restrepo Sierra, Colombia
Federico Restrepo Sierra is an entrepreneur and co-founder of Impact Hub Medellin, an innovation center and impact business incubator. He is also a co-founder of Energía Vectorial, a business focused on decarbonizing mobility through infrastructure and conversion of cars.
- Henriette Weber, Denmark
Henriette Weber is the head of Brand and Engagement at CARE in Denmark, where she is taking sustainability and her unique view on the SDGs to infuse more innovation into the NGO sector.
- James Da Costa, United Kingdom
James Da Costa is a social entrepreneur, the co-founder of Mandala Group, which builds mobile applications in rural India and Kenya for underserved communities, and a Regional Director at the Hult Prize Foundation, the world’s largest student impact entrepreneurship platform.
- Nashilongo Gervasius, Namibia
Nashilongo Gervasius is a knowledge society specialist, media lecturer, communication specialist, and ICT4Dev analyst who is invested in the development narrative of Africa and is committed to upholding Africa’s position as the new frontier for new media, technology and innovation. She is a co-founder of the Internet Society Namibia Chapter.
- Neeshad Shafi, Qatar
Neeshad Shafi is an environmentalist, educator, and social change advocate based in Doha, Qatar. He is the Co-Founder & Executive Director of Arab Youth Climate Movement Qatar (AYCMQ), the first and only registered, independent, non-profit, youth-led environmental association in the State of Qatar. Neeshad was named in the Apolitical’s List of World’s 100 Most Influential People in Climate Policy 2019 and he is also a member of the World Economic Forum’s Global Shapers community, CoalitionWILD, and Youth Climate Lab.
- Philip Ogola, Nairobi, Kenya
Philip Ogola is an online networker known as “The Digital Humanitarian.” Using his platform, he works to raise awareness about local disasters and the need for mental health support.
- Priyanka Jaisinghani, United States
Priyanka Jaisinghani is a social entrepreneur, journalist, and advocate with a passion for making an impact. As the co-founder of a global mentorship program, GirlzFTW, she works to connect high school and college girls to inspiring mentors. She is also driving impact through her work as Managing Editor of Conscious Magazine and as a member of the World Economic Forum’s Global Shaper community.
- Swarnima Shrestha, Nepal
Swarnima Shrestha is a development communications professional and co-founder of Snow Yak Foundation, which supports the education of marginalized children in remote parts of Nepal. She has led communication projects in Nepal and across South Asia region for different organizations. Currently, she is leading communications at International Action Network for Gender Equity and Law (IANGEL) through Atlas Corps Fellowship in San Francisco Bay Area, California.