35 Youth-Led projects on Climate Action Awarded Funding

Empowering young people to put their own projects into practice, YMCA’s Youth-Led Solutions Initiative has selected 35 youth-led climate action projects in 20 countries for funding worth a total of $175,000.

The top categories of the solutions selected for funding are waste management, advocacy and activism, food security, the green economy and employment, and conservation. Many of the youth-led solutions aim to partner with the YMCA, government, the private sector, or other community organizations.


“The Youth-Led Solutions initiatives guiding principles are underpinned by the fact that young people need to be leading the change.  It’s important that we give them the stage at a higher level and enable them to have greater visibilitycomments Tom Valentine, VP International, Y-USA.


“I think this activity of making coin purses from second-hand clothes is very interesting. It takes less than three hours to make a new life for second-hand clothes, and contribute to preserving the environment. We communicate the idea of being friendly to the environment to the children, and seeing their happy smiles when we complete our work is my greatest achievement. From now on I will pass on the idea of reducing waste and regenerating life to more people. I’m working hard to make a contribution to the planet, and to build a greener future.” Words of a ‘Solution Team’ member working on the ‘Creating a Second Life for Second-hand Clothes’ project from Tainan YMCA in Taiwan.


Young people aged 15 to 35, from across the globe, and with or without YMCA affiliation, were given the opportunity to participate in the October 2020 YMCA Youth-Led Solutions Summit on Climate Action which saw a week of regional workshops and e-learning, followed by a global online summit which opened on 19th October and closed on 23rd October 2020.  The young people formed Solution Teams of 6 to 15 individuals, which then fine-tuned their project proposals during and after the summit.


Each Solution Team was encouraged to identify a leadership coach (either on their own or with support from their local YMCA or Area Alliance of YMCAs) to assist them work towards their goals. They also used a Solutions Team support package to guide the development of their solution: they had two weeks to submit their project proposal.


Fund distribution was coordinated through the YMCA Area Alliances.


More information on all projects will be elevated through the YLSI website soon, here are some highlights.


Creating a Second Life for Second-hand Clothes by Tainan YMCA (Taiwan)

The project seeks to create new products out of second-hand clothes


#TeamTrees by YMCA Kosovo

The project’s main goal is to tackle deforestation. Y Kosovo will build a nursery greenhouse in the YMCA Camp at Pjetershan to grow and nurture plants until they are ready to be planted in the wild.


Reducing Food Waste, Increasing Food Security by YMCA of Greater Long Beach (USA)

The solution team seeks to reduce food waste by combatting hunger and waste in distributing food that grocery stores would otherwise have wasted.


Sumaq Muru by YMCA Peru

The Sumaq Muru project aims to produce affordable and non-polluting energy to help communities struggling with poor drainage systems, poor hygienic services, and pollution.