Paris, May 2022 at the ChangeNOW Summit
Whether through movements like ‘Fridays for Future’ or by starting their own initiatives, youth worldwide are stepping up like never before in history to tackle the pressing issues of our time. They hold political and corporate leaders accountable, come up with innovative solutions and create much needed positive impact in their communities.
But: These changemakers need support! According to a report from 2021 by The Possibilists among 800 young social innovators aged 16-35 from 137 countries who all lead impact-focused initiatives, social businesses and non-profits less than 1 in 10 of them can compensate themselves for their work on their ventures, over 60% have experienced burnout and over 90% face significant barriers, such as access to capital, skills and support networks.
"Given the challenges we face as humanity today it is unacceptable that those eager to get to work and fix the world’s problems struggle so much. We need to step up our game and better support young people who dedicate their lives to social and environmental causes," says Nick McGirl, Co-Founder & Managing Director at ChangemakerXchange, the umbrella organization that hosts The Possibilists.
To take the support for young changemakers to the next level 16 of the world’s leading youth social innovation networks, including Ashoka, ChangemakerXchange, We are Family Foundation, Kofi Annan Foundation, Unleash, Yunus & Youth, SOS Children’s Villages International and many more have decided to join forces and form The Possibilists Alliance. Based on their extensive research and studies of the challenges and needs of changemakers they now launch their first collective effort: A global directory of support for young innovators.
“The Possibilists Alliance is ideally positioned to take on this task and role. It’s the world’s largest and first collective of its kind, reaching hundreds of thousands of young changemakers and millions more via social media. And we’re all very excited to see what’s possible now that we all collaborate on a global level,” says Matthias Scheffelmeier, the co-lead of the initiative.
Sourced and endorsed by 30 experienced young social entrepreneurs and freely accessible at thepossibilists.org/directory the beta-version features 500 opportunities from organizations around the world.
The offers include grant-making programs, capacity building, coaching, activities to improve the youth’ mental health, scholarships and technical support and many more. Future versions of the Directory promise to boast thousands of entries, a self-assessment of needs and customized suggestions for support, online learning, events and special offers - making it a one stop shop for young changemakers.