Why it matters
2020 is a year marked by crisis. Devastating wildfires have raged across the world, from the Amazon Rainforest to Australia, burning hundreds of thousands of acres of forests and killing billions of wild animals. The COVID-19 Pandemic has not only caused a terrible loss of life but also deepened existing social inequalities, further entrenched patterns of discrimination, and precipitated the worst economic crisis since the 1930s. All of this has made progress towards the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals more difficult.
The context of the widespread challenges we are facing today makes it even more important that 2020 is seized as a time to overcome the difficulties which we all face together. What that future will look like 25 years from now depends on the choices and actions we make today. Now is the time to engage and spark the profound systemic change needed to create a better post-pandemic world for all life on Earth.
Buddhist Tzu Chi Foundation would like to invite youth across the globe to join the 2020 Youth Future Global Dialogues, to envision the future they want. Today’s youth may only account for 20% of the population but they represent 100% of the future. Join today, make your voice heard and help to shape the future you want to see become a reality.
What we do
We aim to inspire and empower youth to create a sustainable future for all.
How we do it
Host a series of thematic virtual dialogues focusing on the future of humanity and our planet.
Connect global youth, who are passionate about making a difference, to resources and tools that can help effectuate change.
Give youth a seat at the table alongside global leaders to discuss critical issues.
Advocate for youth voice by joining the UN75 initiative and submitting the outcome of the dialogues.
Kevin J. Ezzell currently serves as the Program Director of Lehigh University’s 1-MBA program, a globally ranked one-year MBA program that works with diverse student populations from around the world. Kevin has spent the last fifteen years working in higher education for various colleges and universities in the United States of America, with a focus on innovation, curriculum development, and increasing access to education for first-generation college students.
Jess is a Class of 2020 graduate from Minerva Schools at KGI. Originally from South Africa, Jess has lived in 8 countries across 5 continents exploring the use of digital technology in innovative education. From researching accessible education in Kenya, to policy consulting at the Argentine Ministry of Education, Jess is continuously learning about different education systems and education reform from around the globe. She is currently working on the launch team of Minerva’s innovative new high school program, the Minerva Baccalaureate, as she begins her career in EdTech.
Joe is currently the senior representative of the Religious Affairs Department for the Buddhist Tzu Chi Foundation. He has been an active Tzu Chi volunteer since 2000, participating in disaster relief in both the US and Central America. In 2010, Joe returned to the Tzu Chi Global HQ in Taiwan as a full-time employee. There, he continued to engage in disaster relief efforts, as well as participate in various UN focus groups, such as UNDPI and UNFCCC, where he leveraged his on-the-field experience for the promotion of sustainable development.
Grace is a strategist at Purpose, an international strategy consultancy. Through UN-Habitat, she led a group of 15 designers, including half North Korean refugee youth and half South Korean, to co-design a hypothetical unified Korean education system. Grace holds an MFA in Design for Social Innovation from the School of Visual Arts (SVA) in New York and teaches SVA graduate courses on mapping for visualization and community design.
Dooree has worked in the UN Secretariat as a Public Information Assistant and Peacebuilding Officer at UNICEF in Bosnia and Herzegovina. His UNICEF work included providing dialogue platforms for youth with local government and NGOs for social cohesion and contributing to the promotion and capacity building of STEM education for young girls in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Dooree has lived in over 10 countries and is an avid traveler.
Dustin (he/his) is currently the 9th US Youth Observer to the United Nations, where he connects young people to global issues. He is the son of Taiwanese immigrants who have long instilled the belief that individuals can inspire social change. He is interested in dialogue as a tool for social change. Dustin is also a certified Zumba instructor and loves to play cello for others.
Elliot is a sustainability leader and subject teacher at Dehong International Chinese School in Shanghai. He coordinates compliance with sustainable development standards, as well as overseeing academic integration and the development of service learning programs. Elliot has also taught at the British International School in the UAE and has worked in various industries, including financial services and hospitality, before transitioning into education 6 years ago.
Emily Huang, Ph.D
Dr. Huang is a biomedical research scientist at the Miller School of Medicine at the University of Miami. She earned her doctorate degree in human genetics from Harvard Medical School. Dr. Huang fostered her passion for volunteering in college through Tzu Ching. She later became a Tzu Chi certified commissioner. Dr. Huang has coordinated scholarship programs and volunteer training conferences, and has mentored youth volunteers.
Who should attend
Youth from age 15 to 24-year-old across the world are encouraged to attend.
How to join
RSVP at least two days before the dialogue with this form. We will email you with zoom connection information prior to each dialogue. Please note for all RSVP’s: all seating is first-come, first-served and based on availability. However, priorities will be given to youth between 15 – 24 years old.