Youth Ambassadors are motivated and inspiring young people who represent and advocate for young people’s right to information, for greater social considerations and have the ability to make a global impact.

Youth Ambassadors play an active and decisive role in UTS events and the UTS World Virtual Youth Festival saw 71 nominated ambassadors from around the world come together as a global call to action for inclusion, equality, non-discrimination and peace.

Their involvement in the world’s first ever world youth festival saw 113 International Federations, NGOs, Organisations, and sport related entities come together and be represented on the global stage.

UTS ensures that the voices of young people are always heard and at a crucial time as the world navigates through the covid pandemic, the voices of the youth are even more valuable than ever.

We invited a group of exceptional Ambassadors to join two online workshops in the aftermath of the World Virtual Youth Festival. The role of the youth is critical to discuss their opinions and feedback form the festival, their thoughts for the next edition and to brainstorm what we can learn to ensure the next edition is even better.

UTS Ambassadors included:

  • Daniela Guerrero Martinez, International Aikido Federation, Mexico
  • Pamela Gonzales, Yunus Sports Hub, Guatemala
  • Kallum, International Waterski & Wakeboard Federation, UK
  • Lara Colturi, International Ski Federation, Italy
  • Husnah Kukundakwe, International Paralympic Committee Swimmer, Uganda
  • Leila Malki, International Federation for Equestrian Sports, Palestine
  • Sarah Schumacher, World Minigolf Federation, Germany
  • Ben Haack, Special Olympics, Australia
  • Avery Dow, Special Olympics, UK
  • Alesha Fuchs, International Basketball Federation, Thailand

When UTS Ambassadors were asked, if you could change something in the world, what would it be? The responses of the ambassadors included from Daniela: “Sport should be part of the education, they should go together.”

Leila said: “We should make everyone equal, people shouldn’t judge by religion, color or background,” and Sarah shared: “If everyone could speak the same language, we could communicate better with each other.” From Ben, he said: “People should care more about their local community, more about giving back and do more voluntary work,” and Avery felt: “People should love each other more, despite their differences or where they are from, and Lara summed up bringing the discussion back to sports where she said: “Sport connects, if we were able to share the same passion and to be more caring.”

The session was joined by UTS President Stephan Fox who welcomed the youth and shared his respect for each ambassador during the sessions. Stephan shared his thoughts and opinions during the discussion inspiring the youth through his extensive experience as a martial artist and athlete. Energetic CEO Julia Govinden led the sessions ensuring there was room for everybody to feel comfortable and to feel confident in sharing and discussing together.

A discussion was held inviting the Ambassadors to recommend education topics that could be included in the next virtual festival edition, responses included from Sarah: “Sustainability as we really have to take care of the World,” Ben said: “Technology and Accessibility, we need to ensure that everybody has equal and supported access to it.” Lara explored the idea: “How to start better after the pandemic and where should we go,” and Husnah felt more emphasis needs to be placed on: “Learning more about people with disabilities, stigma, girls and women in general.” Leila feels that still more focus needs to be placed on: “Gender equality and women empowerment,” Kallum said: “Technology and the future,” with Avery expressing the need to encourage: “Peace, unity and standing together as one community.”

After such successful workshops, UTS is optimistic about the future. With diverse and talented Ambassadors who are united in their belief for social justice and the right to education the next edition of the virtual festival looks to be even more inclusive than ever as we make decisions towards a better future for everybody.