Global Advocacy Champions 2022

Meet the inspiring young women set to change the world

We are proud to bring you a new, exciting network of Global Advocacy Champions who will be participating in the 66th UN Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) from 15 - 26 March 2022. This is a unique opportunity for Girl Guides and Girl Scouts to advocate for the rights of girls and young women at an global level, and champion gender equality through the principal global intergovernmental body shaping global policy standards on women's rights.

By becoming Global Advocacy Champions, they will represent the concerns of girls and young women from their national Girl Guiding or Scouting association, and the diverse range of countries where they are from.

We chose our Global Advocacy Champions for their commitment to gender equality, their involvement in Girl Guiding and Girl Scouting and their ability to lead, challenge and create a ripple effect.

Media Enquires: If you would like the opportunity to talk with any of our Global Advocacy Champions about their activism and role in this global gathering please contact

Find out what they are calling for.

The policy issues covered include:

1) priority areas up for discussion at this year’s CSW (Climate Change and Economic Empowerment)

2) WAGGGS' existing positions on key issues affecting girls and young women

3) emerging issues affecting girls and young women e.g. the new priorities that have emerged during COVID-19, including young women’s mental health and also inflation and how it is currently impacting girls and young women’s nutrition.

Click here to read about the CSW Outcomes We Want!

Click here to read our Reaction Statement to the CSW66 [Draft] Agreed Conclusions.

Meet our 2022 Global Advocacy Champions.

Blessmore Chikwakwa, Zimbabwe


“I firmly believe that without inclusiveness and equality, we will never be able to reach our goals for sustainable development and a better future.”


Blessmore Chikwakwa is a member of the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS), from Zimbabwe. She speaks Shona and English.

As part of the Girl Guides Association of Zimbabwe (GGAZ) Young Leaders, Blessmore has organised local climate action and connected with activists worldwide through the Climate Fringe platform. As part of ‘COP in the Community’, she led a clean up event for young girls and women. Making climate action and the topic accessible to her community in the lead up to COP26.

Understanding the power of informed community action, she advocates for quality education and is dedicated to working directly with girls and young women in her community.

“Through Education women are able to take charge of their destiny. They are confident to try new things and can be agents of change and can take part in climate action!”

She was also selected to take part in Reboot the Future, run in conjunction with Unilever, to raise awareness on Gender Equality through the use of social media on the COP26 Gender Day. Watch her social media video here.

Blessmore has been a trainer of leaders on projects such as Action on Body Confidence, which supports girls and young women to take action to tackle the root causes of low body confidence and self-esteem in society. Alongside being a gender champion within GGAZ.

Ask Blessmore about:

  • Action on Sustainable Development Goal 5 – gender equality
  • Body Confidence and Self-Esteem
  • Community Action relating to Climate

Sharmin Banu, India


"Everyone's voice matters and is needed to create a better framework for the world. Across the generations, we should unite and advocate for ourselves - creating a world which is a little better than how we found it! Let's make it happen."


Sharmin Banu is a young advocate with the World Association of Girls Guides & Girl Scouts (WAGGGS) and on WAGGGS U-Report Global Climate Co-Design Team BSG Udupi, Karnataka State India. She speaks Kannada, Urdu, Tamil, Hindi & English.

Sharmin is a campaigner, based in India and part of the Bharat Scouts and Guides (BSG). Collaborating with UNICEF's steering committee, she has contributed to the U-Report India & U-Report Global teams, raising awareness about education in STEM ( Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics), Rights of the Girl Child and Climate Change. She is also active in the community and educates on the value of practising and living the Sustainable Development Goals. This alongside volunteering in vaccination centres and spreading verified information from the World Health Organisation (WHO) over the past couple of years. Her latest efforts have focussed on influencing the community to live in harmony with SDGs and raising awareness on environmental matters.

In association with BSG Udupi, Sharmin also participated in the "Wings Of Peace" Project. This work focused on awareness raising on the need for more sustainable practices in community farming, mangrove plantation, seed ball banks, railways, and coastal areas.

Dedicated to creating a better world, she has actively participated in the following programmes and activities: Her World Her Voice: For Her Digital World campaign, My Voice Our Equal Future, International Day Of Girl and International Women's Day activity. She is also a Zero Hunger & climate action campaigner and played an active role in the "I am the Global Citizens " webinar, organised by BSG India.

Experienced as a facilitator and speaker, examples including at the Hero level Plastic Tide TurnerS event, and Helen Storrow Pop Up Seminar.

Sharmin has a Masters degree in Commerce and is a Wikipedia writer & editor. She uses this platform to promote women's achievements across various regions, and in various wiki languages, adding to the gender equality movement.

She is also a lover of nature and has engaged in additional studies in this area, and has been recognised as a Global Collaborator for the Outdoors University, Europe.

Ask Sharmin about:

  • Climate Change
  • Community Action on Farming, Climate Projects, Clean Seas Movements.
  • Sustainable Development Goals No. 2,3,5,6,13,14,15.
  • Beating Plastic Pollution.
  • United Nations Challenge Badge

Therese Jelwan, Lebanon


“Being raised by a widowed mother and witnessing how hard it was, being both pressured and restricted by a patriarchal society has shaped my aspirations to fight for women’s rights and promote gender equality in decision making.”


Therese Jelwan is a Lebanese youth advocate with WAGGGS (World Association of Girls Guides and Girls Scout) and works closely with its Member Organization, Guides Nationales Orthodoxes (GNO). She speaks Arabic, French and English.

“... the biggest challenge is that gender discrimination exists at the level of Law, habits and traditions. I believe that empowering young women to speak out could be the first step of making the change.”

Believing in the power of girls’ voices, she actively encourages members of the Rangers crew within her community to bring up discussion topics concerning female empowerment on social media. With a specific focus on raising awareness about the stigma of menstruation and nutrition of young girls.

As a rangers and rovers leader and the only female in her administrative committee, Therese is a role model, demonstrating what is possible for girls and women within her community.

“Reflecting on gender, the whole of the Arab Region, including Lebanon, lacks female parliamentary representation and has a noticeably low level of women in higher education.”

Therese wants to be part of changing this! She was a spokesperson for the National Center for Social Integration and has led a team of female volunteers as part of the Corruption Control Campaign, created by the Lebanese Ministry of Economy and Trade.

Currently, Therese is a premedical student and working with the FREE-project at the American University of Beirut. This project promotes female empowerment and offers free academic services including courses on gender equality and female empowerment in higher education.

Ask Therese about:

● Action on Sustainable Development Goals 3, 5 and 13

● Menstruation and campaigning.

● Supporting women to assume positions in decision making

Fathima Zaakiya Mohamed Ashraf, Sri Lanka


“Brought up in a home where both males and females are treated equally, my parents have always taught me the importance of speaking out for one’s rights.”


Fathima Zaakiya Mohamed Ashraf is a youth advocate with the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS) and a President’s Guide with the Sri Lanka Girl Guides Association (SLGGA) based in Colombo. She is 19 years old and speaks English, Tamil, Sinhala and French.

“Together we can strive to achieve zero gender inequality”

She has been on her girl guide journey for 12 years and is currently a member of the International sub-committee and the Communications sub-committee of the SLGGA.

She is experienced as a volunteer social media moderator for WAGGGS. Assigned to the ‘Climate and environment and well-being’ session, during the Global Youth Summit 2021.

She has also spoken out about the problems faced by youth in Sri Lanka during the pandemic at the Child and Youth consultation discussion organized by UNICEF. She was a member of the team that designed and drafted the achievement badge “Against Child Labour” for SLGGA, in collaboration with the International Labour Organization. She also drafted the curriculum for the achievement badge “Ozone Friends” for SLGGA, in collaboration with the Ministry of Environment.

Also a member of the organizing committee for the Girl Powered Nutrition Virtual Fair 2021 (SLGGA), where she was involved in creating awareness on adolescent nutrition and the impact of iron deficiency anemia in Sri Lanka. Being a public speaker, she has delivered speeches on problems surrounding child labour, pollution and climate change.

Her experience as an advocacy champion for the Girl Powered Nutrition programme, promoting awareness on adolescent nutrition in Sri Lanka, was the catalyst, opening her eyes and desire to be Global Advocacy Champion.

“Since childhood, I have personally encountered a lot of situations where women were mistreated just for the fact of being a woman. All my past personal experiences, as well as the stories I’ve heard from friends and family in my country, have fueled my thirst to fight against gender inequality. That is why I am motivated to take part in the CSW and represent the voices of 10 million girls and young women in fighting against gender-based violence and discriminations. Because, after all, everyone deserves to live a life free of unfair treatment”

Zaakiya is also currently reading for her Bachelor of Science in Psychology and Counselling at Coventry University and Bachelor of Islamic Psychology through the Open University.

“Continuing my career in the field of Psychology, learning about the after effects of gender-based violence and discriminations have left strong imprints within me. Growing up in a society where certain women are expected to focus only on housework and often restricted from reaching their fullest potential, I have always wanted to put an end to gender inequality and stand up for the rights of girls and young women. Before joining guiding, I’ve only had the rage to fight against unfair treatments. But after all the experiences and confidence I’ve gained from guiding, I’m able to take action in solidarity and be part of many campaigns.”

She believes in creating a positive difference, for her world, and being part of ending gender inequality.

Ask Zaakiya about:

  • Against Child Labour achievement badge curriculum - SLGGA
  • Action on SDG 2 – Zero Hunger
  • Campaigning and education to improve access to nutrition

Nagashima Rica, Japan


“I believe that women’s empowerment is one of the most critical components to developing communities, societies, and the environment.”


Nagashima Rica is a youth advocate with the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS), based in Osaka, West Japan. She speaks Japanese and English.

“I describe myself as a feminist. I advocate for gender equality, wanting to reconstruct a male-dominated society and to have greater autonomy and power.”

Rica is a graduate student studying Women and Development, a course that provides advanced training for women and gender advocates. She also has an academic background in policy analysis and researching women’s issues related to climate change from a feminist perspective.

She advocates for womens’ and girls’ rights to achieve gender equality, especially relating to Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR). She believes that supporting it can greatly reduce violence against women and girls, and is passionate about fighting for gender disparities in any situation. She also has a great motivation to challenge herself and broaden her horizon by going out of her comfort zone.

She was selected to join a two-year campaign programme, organized by the Ministry of Education in Japan, which promoted students to go abroad to study. Here she gained many campaign communications skills, including how to give impactful speeches and presentations.

Ask Rica about:

  • Gender inequality in Japan and related policies
  • Women and climate change
  • Gender development studies and feminist theory
  • Policy analysis

Lesline Ndamiss Haffsa, Benin


“Eighteen years is the age of all possibilities and I choose to be a real actress of change.”


Lesline is 18 years old and a member of the Association des Guides du Bénin (AGB). She speaks French and English.

She has been active in the Movement since 2015, and previously enjoyed attending weekly unit meetings until an opportunity to play a greater part appeared. Attending a local training event and camp as part of the ‘Volunteer Day’ celebrations marked the beginning of her journey and commitment to advocacy.

Lesline has decided to write a new Guiding story for herself, with the confidence to apply for the role of Global Advocacy Champion ignited after participating in the project: "Toutes Engagées Pour La Planète" (All Together for the Planet) (named Girl-Led Action on Climate Change (for english speaking associations). It was a turning point where she knew she wanted to do more, and her belief in the cause has enabled her to overcome her shyness.

She has also participated in the Free Being Me programme, which was a pivoting point in her own journey.

“This training helped me a lot in my personal development process. I am a very shy person. Today, I am a voice for girls in the fight against climate change and I am proud to take up this challenge.”

Lesline is determined to play a role in the fight for gender equality, conscious and feeling the realities of inequality within her community. She can see this clearly amidst her close friends and the options they have.

“It’s hard to ignore when there are more women graduating from university (60% female to 40% male) and yet, only a tiny proportion of these women have the chance to access and secure job opportunities. And those who do, will often face salary discrimination.”

“I think that gender equality is not only a fundamental right for every human being, but also a necessity for us to live in peace. It is therefore important to act against the evolution of these discriminating factors against girls and young women.”

This reality motivates Lesline to fight for equality, believing that it is a fundamental right for every human being, as well as being a necessity for peace. She hopes to use this experience to grow, connect and learn; Sharing her expertise whilst also bringing back ideas. She aspires one day to be a great leader for her community and Benin and positively impact national policies.

Ask Lesline About

Gabriela Benavides, Chile



Gabriela has been a member of the Asociación de Guías y Scouts de Chile (AGSCh) since 2001. Currently, she participates as coordinator of the team that oversees working and teaching around the first 5 Sustainable Development Goals.

With her team, they created “No + Silencio”, a survey that aimed to create a benchmark, investigating the levels, circumstances and realities of discrimination, sexism, gender-based violence and sexual violence suffered by women and gender dissidents within a guide-scout context. The data can then contribute to a review and evolution of the vision, policies, protocols, and training courses of the AGSCh.

Gabriela is a also nutritionist and high school biology teacher. Throughout her career, she has dedicated herself to understanding and the study of transformational educational spaces. Ensuring there is a safe and healthy environment for any learning experience, can lead to significant improvements in people's lives and in climate change.

“To protect and enrich the education of girls and women, it's essential that learning spaces are safe. Free from any type of violence, especially gender-based and sexual violence. They must also be healthy environments: physically, psychologically and environmentally. The transformation of formal and informal educational spaces is in urgent need.”

She has actively participated in national social movements for change and progress, dating from her time at school in 2011, and more recently "estallido social” in 2019. This called for and led to the creation of a new constitution.

Ask Gabriela about:

  • Action on Sustainable Development Goals 2, 3, 4 and 5.
  • Gender-based violence.
  • Feminism.
  • Safe Spaces and Health Education.

Pascaline Furaha Irakarama


“Wherever you turn, you can find something or someone who might need a helping hand. Even if it is a little thing, choosing to do something, without payment, is a privilege. I do this as I think everyone’s voice matters and they can all be powerful change-makers.”


Pascaline Furaha is a Girl Guide and youth advocate based in Kigali, Rwanda. A business graduate, from the University of Rwanda, majoring in Information Technology. She speaks French, English and Kinyarwanda.

Pascaline enjoys her involvement in the Movement at both a national and global level. As part of the WAGGGS Her World Her Voice programme, she’s a member of the team developing a monitoring and evaluation framework on Guiding in Rwanda, with the aim of better understanding the expectations of girls and young women.

She’s also an active member within her community, she’s a Stop the Violence campaigner, with a particular focus on disability and inclusion and has taken part in national campaigns to end gender-based violence. She is experienced and comfortable giving media interviews and liaising with the press.

Additionally, she forms part of a joint task force of activists for change. Bringing young people together from the Rwanda Girl Guides Association and IOGT-NTO MOVEMENT. This team’s purpose is to raise awareness on the dangers and harmful use of addictive substances. The activity has a focus on drugs and alcohol, as well as educating on the benefits of a healthy and balanced lifestyle.

Pascaline has been selected for and attended a number of global events with WAGGGS, including The Juliette Low Seminar (the flagship Leadership event for young women), the 37th Africa Regional Conference, the 37th WAGGGS World Conference and The Youth Exchange South to South (YESS) Girls' Movement.

Pascaline more recently, has been working as the leader of the capacity building team, with the objective of increasing the capacity of association members.

Ask Pascaline about:

  • Community Action on Violence, Drugs/Substance use, Teen pregnancies
  • Communications & Advocacy Campaigns
  • Membership development
  • Conflict management
  • Education on Menstruation
  • Personal and financial management

Mercedes Arnaude, Argentina


“No one has been really been talking about how climate change affects girls and women, or focussing on solutions, when the disadvantages and impact I see are very visible. It’s time we put these issues on the table and demand a change. We no longer want promises, we want accountability.”


Mercedes Arnaude is 24 years old and from Argentina. She joined the Girl Guiding movement at the age of 9 and has been a member ever since, enjoying the friendships, lifestyle and values it teaches. 

“I've always noticed unfair and unkind situations in my community. Through Girl Guiding, I’ve realised that gender inequality is common throughout the world, and that we can fight for it together and alongside each other. With a global mindset and my amazing tools from WAGGGS, it has made me want to keep informing myself and work to be part of the change.”

Mercedes was selected to represent WAGGGS and be part of Generation Equality. Inspired by the experience, her motivation to advocate for gender equality and for girls’ rights has grown. Finding allies and driven by the discovery of a whole new group of people who were willing to change things. Understanding that together their voices were louder and will travel further.

We have to make sure that every girl and young woman knows the power their voice holds. We can help them use it and empower it to fight for all our rights and for a better world.”

Through participating in Generation Equality Forum, Mercedes has also taken this knowledge, passion and experience back with her to Argentina and with the support of her Member Organisation, created events where young women could come together, amongst peers and discuss these topics.

“By creating a community experience, a social network intervention with the Girl Guides from my country, I realized how interested and willing to learn, inform, and fight. As a Global Advocacy Champion, I hope to share their voices and work with them to achieve great things.”

“It’s a huge responsibility but if we want a change, we need to break the ceiling and work towards our goal. Gender Equality.”

Ask Mercedes about:

  • SDG 5 – Gender Equality
  • Community Action
  • Youth mobilisation

Anise Kaz, Malaysia


“We should not take non-formal education for granted - Thankfully I was privileged to understand how important environmental awareness was early on, which is why I aim to empower myself and those around me to seek clarity and knowledge on climate-related issues. It is never too late to start learning about how we can participate in climate action!”


Anise Kaz is an environmental youth advocate based in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. She speaks English and Malay.

Anise has an academic background in architecture and a passion for the arts, culture and environmental sustainability. She currently works as an architectural research assistant for sustainable practice, however, her environmental awareness and advocacy journey began at the age of 9 with exposure to the topic through non-formal environmental education. At age 12, she was sponsored by Malaysia’s Ministry of Education for an educational sustainability trip to Sweden to study their government’s sustainability practises.

She strongly believes that the best way to empower women and children in the fight for climate justice starts with a strong foundation in environmental education and she is keen on influencing those around her to lead more sustainable lifestyles.

“Most of us, especially, in the Global South, are directly affected by the impact of climate change yet, we are still ill-educated on this subject. There is neither importance nor weight placed on this topic and so the general public’s perspective is skewed by this lack of attention. Therefore, we’re unprepared to deal and cope with the consequences of this climate emergency which are coming. And that we are in now. “

She has cultivated a love for community-based volunteering over the last 10 years with Girl Guiding, and this is why most of her campaign work is focused on mobilising local movements.

Anise was one of the team leaders at the YUNGA Ocean Challenge Badge and has also had experience volunteering for several local environmental movements such as the Malaysian Nature Society, Project YUFE, Project VOCAL, Klima Action Malaysia and Ecoknights. 

After receiving her Queen’s Guide Award, she combined her Guiding leadership, role as the President of HELP University’s Environmental Science Club and community action knowledge to develop a campaign which hoped to raise awareness about the amount of litter Malaysians produced through beach cleaning and education. The campaign also succeeded in the banning of plastic waste during university food events and festivities.

Most recently Anise was active in the PR team for a project called, Weaving Hopes for the Future, led by the leading environmental youth and women-led NGO, Klima Action Malaysia. This initiative was an art and cultural response to the climate degradation and climate injustice in Malaysia, providing a platform for Malaysia’s indigenous youth and women to meaningfully participate in COP26 at Glasgow in 2021. 

Ask Anise about:

  • Sustainable Design
  • Environmental Advocacy
  • Community Action on Climate Change
  • Creativity and using Arts for Change
  • Volunteering

Zafinimampera Olivasoa Alexina Tsiky, Madagascar


“I want to offer the possibility of a better world, where gender equality reigns and where girls and women can develop their potential and follow their dream in peace, far from violence. I will not stop in my fight for this.”


Zafinimampera Olivasoa Alexina Tsiky, known to friends as Alexina, is from Mahajanga, Madagascar and is a Girl Scout leader from the Girl Scouts of Madagascar (Skotisma Zazavavy Malagasy). She speaks Malagasi, French and English.

Alexina is the coordinator of her diocese youth committee and leads on planning, organizing and coordinating the events, programmes and annual activities created for the youth members within her association. She is also the coordinator of the Stop The Violence (STV) programme in her region and a national advocacy champion for the Plastic Tide Turners Challenge (PTTC). Supported by her Association, she has also participated in reforestation projects focussed on sustaining the region’s mangroves.

She has formed part of the team training young girls on the STV programme and participated in campaigns, driving awareness of Gender-based Violence during the UN’s annual 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-based Violence campaign. In 2019 she participated and developed her leadership at The Juliette Low Seminar (JLS). As part of this, she developed and delivered a ‘100 Girls Project’, which saw her amplify the learnings on leadership and gender equality within her community. Training 100 young girls in her local area on the WAGGGS’ leadership model. Shining a light on what gender equality means in their context and inspiring leadership within each of them.

She was once a shy little girl who didn't dare to dream big because she felt limited by her modest background and its place in a society where corruption was prevalent, but this all changed at age 11. It was only through joining the Girl Scouts of Madagascar that she began to imagine a different life and this is why she’s so passionate about community action and sharing the possibilities of the Movement and non-formal education.

Academically, Alexina has chosen to focus her thesis on the topic of sexual violence in her region. Selecting this field to understand the realities of the situation and the lives of the victims, with the vision of being part of providing better care solutions.

Ask Alexina about:

  • Gender-based Violence
  • SDG 5 - Gender Equality
  • WAGGGS Leadership Mindsets

Lidya Rwejuna, Tanzania


“I advocate for sexual and reproductive health and rights with the aim of increasing knowledge and awareness among school girls, so that they can make empowered and informed choices about their futures.”


Lidya is a youth advocate with the World Association of Girl Guide and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS), based in Tanzania. She speaks English and Swahili.

Lidya works professionally as a public administrator, working and advocating for sexual and reproductive health and rights.

“I believe in the vital importance of this work. I can see the value of my work especially when I see how girls and young women in rural areas are affected by a lack of education and information and consequently, are not provided with the opportunity to reach their full potential.”

Lidya is a young leader and is participating in The YESS (Youth Exchange South to South) Girls' Movement in 2022. She has worked with its National Taskforce Capacity Building Team focussing on assessing and analysing the gaps within a Member Organisation, looking at the areas such as organisational management, finance, recruitment and retention, governance, and influence.

Lidya was also a project officer in United Nations Association (UNA) 2018-2019, and played a vital role in researching, monitoring, and evaluating the implementation of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), on Gender Equality (Goal 5), No Poverty (Goal 1), Quality Education (Goal 4) and Reduced Inequalities (Goal 10). She has used this knowledge to bring a positive impact to her community through advocacy and awareness raising of the SDGs, especially Goal 5: Gender Equality.

Ask Lidya about

● Action on the SDGs - Goal 1, 4, 5, 8, 10

● Sexual & Reproductive Health and Rights

● Organisational management

● Gender-Based Violence

Maud Ewoenam Ama Fugar, Ghana


"I have always believed that women are not victims; we are agents of change, we are drivers of progress, we are makers of peace - all we need is a fighting chance."


Maud is a member of the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS) from Ghana. She speaks English fluently.

Maud is passionate about personal growth and development. She is very interested in championing the SDG agenda and particularly interested in goals 4,5,6,7, 10 and 13. Maud is a self motivated individual and challenges herself to be the best version of herself. She is mindful of inclusivity and loves to interact, include and engage with persons with disabilities.

"My few years of teaching experiences in deprived areas has revealed to me that girls and young women deserve equal rights to opportunities out there".

Being a 2019 Juliette Low Seminar alumnae, Maud was privileged to receive training on the WAGGGS Leadership Mindsets and this has greatly impacted her daily life and connection with her community. Maud created a 100 Girls Project which saw her engage with young girls on Menstrual Hygiene Management and practices. She is passionate about educating and empowering young girls and helping them develop their self-confidence and leadership skills.

Being a part of the Ghana Girl Guides Association (GGGA), she has also benefited from trainings on Stop the Violence (STV), Action on Body Confidence (ABC), Menstrual Hygiene Management (MHM), Surf Smart and the Plastic Tide Turners Challenge (PTTC).

Most of her engagements revolve around climate change advocacy, environmental sustainability and gender equality.

She is a recognised international volunteer with the Youth Southeast Asia community (Young SEA) and participated in the Campaign of YOUth, highlighting issues distorting our oceans and its sustainable recovery post COVID-19.

She has contributed to a number of community sustainability activities and projects including beach clean ups, plastic waste recovery and tree planting.

Ask Maud about:

  • International Volunteering
  • Menstrual Hygiene Management
  • Oceans recovery post Covid-19

Ruby Sands, New Zealand


"I want to live in a world where policies are made by girls and women rather than adapted for them later.”

Ruby Sands.PNG

Ruby Sands is a youth advocate with the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS), based in Wellington, New Zealand. She speaks English and Spanish. She is currently a Board Member of Girl Guiding New Zealand and leads their girl advocacy programme.

Ruby is a policy advisor with a passion for ensuring that decision makers consider and engage with girls and young women when making decisions and designing policy and programmes.

“If you are making decisions about girls and young women, you really should pass the decision making power to them. They are the experts in their own lives.”

Ruby has ensured that the voices of children and young people in New Zealand are included in reporting on the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child. As a UNICEF Youth Ambassador, she designed ways for children and young people to participate, and wrote the “Our Voices, Our Rights” Report.

“I want to live in a world where policies are made by girls and women rather than adapted for them later.”

She was involved in the relationship establishment of U-Report and WAGGGS, developing several polls, including one focused on the SDGs which was presented at the UN’s 2017, High Level Political Forum

She attended CSW65 on behalf of the United Nations Association of New Zealand and is returning to CSW66 as a WAGGGS delegate, alongside assisting the Global Advocacy Champions to turn their ideas into policy recommendations.

Ruby is an experienced facilitator and speaker examples include at the Juliette Low Seminar, the Asia Pacific Young Women in Governance Webinar and the United Nations High Level Political Forum 2017.

As a board member herself, she has worked with young women in the Asia Pacific Region to ensure that they have the skills and confidence to run for governance roles within their Member Organisations and at regional level. She presented motions at the Asia Pacific Regional Conference 2019 to ensure that a diverse range of communication tools are used to ensure that young women are aware of nomination processes.

Ask Ruby about:

  • Policy analysis-especially taking a gender policy lens to decision making
  • Children’s Rights
  • Meaningful engagement of Girls and Young Women in governance and decision making.
  • Natural Disasters

Contact us

Global Advocacy Lead | Managing the Global Advocacy Champions
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