Three Ugandans win the 2018 Queens Leaders Award

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The Queen’s Young Leader Award recognises and celebrates exceptional people aged 18-29 from across the Commonwealth, who are taking the lead in their communities and using their skills to transform lives. The award aims to discover, support and celebrate young people from across the Commonwealth.

The search for the final ever Queen’s Young Leaders was launched from London’s Australia House in June, then, thousands of applications were submitted from Commonwealth countries ranging from Canada and Australia to Kiribati and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines.

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The Ugandan winners

Bazil Mwotta Biddemu

Bazil is dedicated to helping farmers in his community thrive. He is the founder of AgroDuuka, which helps farmers in Uganda access information about market prices for produce in their region.

It is designed to act as a low-cost SMS platform to connect smallholder rural farmers directly to buyers, before and after their harvest.
To date, Bazil and his team have helped more than 800 farmers from 36 villages in Western and Central Uganda to gain a fair price for their produce.
AgroDuuka has recently partnered with the Uganda National Farmers Federation, which is enabling almost five million farmers to have access to AgroDuuka.

Elizabeth Kasujja

Elizabeth uses technology to transform the lives of people living with mental health issues in Uganda. Her inspiration came after witnessing the stigma surrounding mental health in her community, and discovering that many mental health problems went undiagnosed due to a shortage of trained professionals and resources.
This led Elizabeth to co-found Clear Yo Mind, which creates secure online platforms for people to express their feelings and access free help from mental health professionals.

Clear Yo Mind also offers a text message service, where users can request help, and secure one-to-one appointments with professionals outside of a hospital environment.
Elizabeth is currently studying towards a Diploma in Psychology to further support her work.

Stephen Katende

Stephen works to ensure that children in rural areas of Uganda are able to complete their education.
He is the founder of Kisoboka Africa, which runs School Community Banks in the rural districts of Lyantonde and Lwengo that allow parents to save, borrow and invest for their children’s education.
In addition, Kisoboka Africa equips parents with entrepreneurial and agricultural skills to help start and run their own businesses.

The parents are also encouraged to engage with teachers to address any challenges their children are facing at school. Stephen and his team now work with 150 parents in two schools, and have helped over 400 children to acquire an education.
The organisation is also starting to operate Young Savers and Investment Clubs in rural primary schools so that children can learn how to save money and boost their leadership skills.

Winners of the prestigious Award receive a unique package of:
As a Queen’s Young Leader you will be allocated a mentor with relevant experience and expertise who will support you over the course of the year to continue and develop your work.
Online learning
Online learning will be provided with materials relevant to your area of interest, as well as serving as a place for you to meet and share experiences and knowledge with other Queen’s Young Leaders. The online training course,

‘Leading Change’ is a year-long programme that leads you through topics including leadership, marketing, management and entrepreneurship as well as those vital skills such as time management, confidence building and stress relief. You’ll speak to experts from around the world and learn from case studies of other global young leaders.

One-week residential programme in the UK: The 60 Award winners will have the opportunity to meet with inspiring people and visit organisations in the UK that have expertise in areas such as media and communications, social action and advocacy. During this week, Awards will be presented by Her Majesty The Queen at Buckingham Palace.

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