Nestlé has partnered with UNESCO to provide young people with resources and skills to achieve positive social impact in their communities.

The project, called ‘Because Youth Matter’, will begin in Latin America, with the aim of scaling up to a global level in the future.

Applications are now open for grantees aged 18-30, with 20 grants of $10,000 USD being awarded to young leaders, entrepreneurs, and youth organisations to help them create and implement changemaking solutions for social impact.

Laurent Freixe, CEO for Nestlé’s Zone Latin America, said young people must be given the opportunity to become entrepreneurs and innovators.

“They drive economic and social progress and yet, the world does not support them enough. They lack financial support and are not part of decision-making. Through this exciting new partnership with UNESCO, we hope to make a difference and help future leaders find their voice and put their ideas into practice.”

With multiple crises affecting the world, youth are amongst the most affected, with 80 per cent of young people globally vulnerable to depression and disillusionment*, the partnership aims to help young people achieve their full potential.

Gabriela Ramos, Assistant Director-General for Social and Human Sciences of UNESCO, said young people deserve a chance succeed, and by succeeding, to change the world.

“We cannot continue with business as usual; UNESCO is partnering with Nestlé, to help bring young peoples’ ideas to fruition so they can help transform our society. Our joint program will create a space for young people to have impact, inspiring many others, old and young, to follow suit. The solution to the multiple crises we experience is to have all young hands-on deck.”

The partnership builds on Nestlé’s Nestlé needs YOUth initiative, which has the goal of enabling 10 million young people around the world access economic opportunities by 2030.

* World Economic Forum, Global Risks Report, 2021.

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