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Youth Co:Lab Summit 2024 Provides a Platform for Youth from Singapore to Shine on the Regional Stage

2024-07-11 09:00 1701

The Regional Youth Co:Lab Summit, jointly organized by Citi Foundation and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), positions young people at the forefront to solve the region's most pressing challenges

SINGAPORE, July 11, 2024 /PRNewswire/ -- Representing Singapore - Greenairy and Moonbeam, young social enterprises focused on air purification and repurposing excess produce respectively, joined over 200 participants from 20 countries and territories gathered in the Philippines at the Youth Co:Lab Summit 2024. Centered on the theme of 'Inclusive Entrepreneurship', the Summit was a platform to celebrate and highlight the critical role of young entrepreneurs from diverse backgrounds in driving sustainable and equitable economic development and in advancing the implementation of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The Youth Co:Lab Summit 2024 by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and Citi Foundation, was organized together with the Asian Development Bank (ADB), and the Department of Trade and Industry Philippines (DTI). 

Held at the ADB Headquarters in Manila, Philippines recently, the Summit was a platform to champion inclusivity in entrepreneurship, promote youth-driven climate initiatives, and harness digital skills where young social entrepreneurs present their inclusive solutions, female-centric initiatives, support for underserved communities and innovative climate responses to build inclusive and just societies. The two-day summit saw participants from diverse backgrounds, including young social entrepreneurs, government delegates, private sector partners, investors, and other youth community partners also joining virtually.

Founder of Greenairy Tanvi Ravindra Thombre, and Co-Founder of The Moonbeam Toh Varden showcased their innovative solutions before a high-level judging panel at the regional summit, highlighting their commitment to sustainability and inventive approaches. Greenairy, provides an innovative plant-based air purification solution for indoor spaces, delivering clean air efficiently through active air phytoremediation technology, and The Moonbeam aims to repurpose excess produce and create high-value products that can be consumed instead of being wasted, focusing on creating products with greater value showcased their innovative solutions at the regional summit, highlighting their commitment to sustainability and inventive approaches.     

Commenting on the experience Tanvi Ravindra Thombre, Founder of Greenairy said: "Meeting other youth change-makers and hearing about their diverse solutions reinforced the power of the youth in driving impactful change. Hearing from the government and social incubators reminded us that it takes a village to grow an enterprise. We will take these insights back and continue to grow our sustainability efforts with Greenairy. Knowing we have Youth Co:lab's support in terms of mentorship, funding, exposure, and opportunities encourages us to work even harder to make our social innovation a reality."

"Through our Pathways to Progress job skills-building initiative, the Citi Foundation has been a longtime supporter of organizations working around the globe to address the persistent issue of youth unemployment," said Florencia Spangaro, Chief Operating Officer of the Citi Foundation. "With its focus on inclusive entrepreneurship, this year's Youth Co:Lab Summit is a celebration of the next generation of diverse entrepreneurs and innovators who are committed to leaving a positive mark on their communities."

The Summit provided a regional space for young social entrepreneurs across the Asia-Pacific region to foster knowledge and idea exchanges through networking and collaboration, inspire and engage youth to take action, discuss emerging trends in the youth entrepreneurship ecosystem, advocate for policies to enhance its resilience and inaugurate collaborative initiatives for inclusive youth entrepreneurship.

Youth Co:Lab Summit 2024 was also held in partnership with the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), the International Labour Organization (ILO), the Aspen Network of Development Entrepreneurs (ANDE), CVC Capital Partners, the Commonwealth Secretariat (CWS), EY, The Islamic Development Bank (IsDB), the Spark Project, and the StartupUp Quezon City and the Local Economic Investment Promotions Office of the Local Government of Quezon City.

In Singapore, Youth Co:Lab has been partnering government agency National Youth Council since 2020 through the Youth Action Challenge (YAC) – a four-month national program that gives youths opportunities to ideate and develop potential ideas, be provided with resources, networks, and funds to implement their ideas. The initiative has benefited a total of 1100 young people since its inception, with a balanced and diverse representation across youths' age groups, education, and gender.

Youth Co:Lab, co-created by UNDP and the Citi Foundation in 2017, is the largest youth movement for empowerment, social entrepreneurship, equality, and social inclusion in Asia Pacific and has supported young people in 28 countries and territories. Since its inception, activities supported by Youth Co:Lab have reached 280,300 participants across the Asia-Pacific region.

About Citi

Citi is a preeminent banking partner for institutions with cross-border needs, a global leader in wealth management and a valued personal bank in its home market of the United States. Citi does business in more than 180 countries and jurisdictions, providing corporations, governments, investors, institutions and individuals with a broad range of financial products and services.  

Additional information may be found at www.citigroup.com | X: @Citi | LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/citi | YouTube: www.youtube.com/citi | Facebook: www.facebook.com/citi 

About Citi Foundation

The Citi Foundation works to promote economic progress and improve the lives of people in low-income communities around the world. We invest in efforts that increase financial inclusion, catalyze job opportunities for youth, and reimagine approaches to building economically vibrant communities. The Citi Foundation's "More than Philanthropy" approach leverages the enormous expertise of Citi and its people to fulfill our mission and drive thought leadership and innovation. For more information, visit www.citifoundation.com.  

About UNDP

UNDP is the leading United Nations organization fighting to end the injustice of poverty, inequality, and climate change. Working with our broad network of experts and partners in 170 countries, we help nations to build integrated, lasting solutions for people and planet. Learn more at undp.org or follow at @UNDP.

Source: Citi
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