Tuesday 19 January 2010

16-year old social activist from Tokyo selected to attend World Economic Forum in Davos

Tokyo, 19 January 2010 - As part of the Global Changemakers programme, the British Council Japan (Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo, Director: Jason James) will send Carmina Mancenon, a native of the Philippines who lives in Tokyo, to attend the World Economic Forum’s Annual Meeting in Davos, Switzerland, at the end of January  2010. Carmina was one of six outstanding young social activists selected to attend the high-level event from over 1,200 young applicants from 44 countries. At the Forum, Carmina will have the opportunity to raise awareness of the issues facing developing countries with world leaders including Bill Clinton (former President of the United States of America) and Gordon Brown (Prime Minister of the United Kingdom).

The six Davos participants were chosen by 60 of their peers to attend the World Economic Forum Meeting at the Global Changemakers’ Global Youth Summit held in the UK at the end of November 2009.  The 60 young people, who were selected from the initial 1200 applicants from 44 countries, gathered near London for a week of intense workshops, lectures and skills training to enhance their community activism and help shape their call to action to world leaders.

Carmina was chosen as one of six representatives because of her outstanding record in the field of social activism in Japan. Carmina has been active in raising awareness of the issues facing developing countries among the youth of Japan through various fundraising activities, including a project for house-building in Thailand. Furthermore, Carmina also promoted social awareness among Japanese youth in the Kanto region by establishing the Kanto Plains Essay Competition, in which school children from the region submitted essays on contemporary international issues. She has also worked on Japan-based causes, including food programmess for the homeless in Ueno Park, Tokyo. Carmina has met the Ambassadors of the UK and the Philippines in advance of her trip, and upon her return will be sharing her experiences with Japanese children through talks at schools in the Tokyo area. 

The five other representatives  who will be attending Davos come  from Iraq, Canada, Sri Lanka, Portugal and Botswana.  

David Warren, His Excellency Her Majesty Ambassador to Japan 
"Carmina is a shining representative of the globalised times in which we live: born in the Philippines, raised and educated in Japan, trained in the UK, and now off to Switzerland to represent the world’s youth at the WEF. Although still young, she has already achieved a great deal, from raising awareness of the problems facing developing countries, to providing support for the homeless in places as diverse as Ueno Park in Tokyo and villages in Thailand. 

Having lived in both the Philippines and Japan, Carmina has direct experience of the gulf between developed and developing societies and this has instilled in her a drive to bridge that divide. I'm proud that the British Council is supporting Carmina in her quest and helping to foster a new generation of future leaders. 

I hope that Carmina will be able to use her experience at Davos to further advance her work in social activism upon her return.” 

Domingo L. Siazon, Jr., Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary, Republic of the Philippines 
“It gives me great pride that the Philippines will be represented at the World Economic Forum by Carmina. Despite having been educated in Japan, Carmina has not forgotten her roots, and as well as playing an active role in the Filipino-Japanese youth community she has also made great achievements in raising awareness of the difficulties facing societies less privileged than Japan. 

I am grateful to the British Council for providing this platform to Carmina and I fully expect her to use the experience of Davos to continue to make a positive difference in the lives of others.” 

About Global Changemakers 
Global Changemakers is a global network of a select group of young who have a significant track record as social entrepreneurs, social activists and volunteers (ages 16-25). They meet to share ideas and best practices, and work individually and together on projects that directly impact the lives of those in their local communities. In addition, each year, a select group of Global Changemakers is chosen to participate in high-level political and economic events, to act as advocates and to raise decision-makers’ awareness of key issues on the global agenda. The Global Changemakers programme is a flagship British Council programme developed from our partnership with the World Economic Forum. Founded for the Annual Meeting of the World Economic Forum in Davos in 2007, Global Changemakers have partnered with, and participated in, World Economic Forum events (in Davos, Sharm-el-Sheikh, and Cape Town), the Clinton Global Initiative, the Global Humanitarian Forum and the G20. Individual supporters include HM Queen Rania Al-Abdullah of Jordan, President Bill Clinton, and the actress Emma Thompson. The Rt Honourable Gordon Brown serves as Patron of Global Changemakers. The programme was established with the aim of enabling young community activists, emerging leaders and influencers from around the world to build a sustainable global network committed to tackling global issues.  

About the Global Youth Summit
The Global Youth Summit is part of the British Council’s pioneering Global Changemakers initiative. 
It has taken place four times since 2007, bringing together 60 Global Changemakers from across the world for a 5-day summit in the UK. The objectives of the summit are to: 

  • Improve participants’ knowledge, insight, and exposure to key issues on the global economic, political and social agenda 
  • Improve participants’ ability to deliver their local projects by giving them the concrete tools and skills they need to amplify their efforts 
  • Support dialogue and exchange among youth from across the globe 
  • Serve as a platform for Changemakers to exchange knowledge, ideas and best practices 
  • Grow and sustain a global network of Global Changemakers each of whom is active in his or her local community through social entrepreneurship, community activism, or voluntary work 

Carmina Mancenon took place in the fourth Global Youth Summit, which took place in November 2009, and it was her performance during the Summit in workshops and speeches that led to her being selected by her peers to attend the World Economic Forum in Davos. 

Previous Japanese Global Changemakers 
There have previously been two Japanese youngsters selected as Global Chagemakers. Mariko Kato and Nozomi Nakajima were elected as Global Changemakers in 2008 and attended the second Global Youth Summit in London. Nozomi Nakajima represented Japan at the G20 Summit in April 2009 in order to communicate her views on the world economy to UK Prime Minister Rt Hon Gordon Brown, together with Global Changemakers from the other G20 participant countries. 

The British Council is the UK’s international body for cultural relations. We build engagement and trust for the UK through the exchange of knowledge and ideas between people worldwide. We are registered in the UK as a charity.

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