Joannes Paulus Yimbesalu
Joannes Paulus Yimbesalu is a Research Scientist by profession, and growing up he saw his mother make many sacrifices to provide him and his siblings with a quality education. In 2010, he co-founded HOPE for Children Cameroon with the goal of educating every child, one school, one village at a time. His organization has provided tuition assistance to over 300 children, and 500 children have benefitted from school supplies in 5 schools. In order to change the practice of open defecation and keep girls in school, his organization, with external support, also embarked on the construction of clean and safe pit toilets in 5 different schools, serving over 1300 children. His involvement in advocating for universal education earned him three international awards – the 2014 Youth Courage Award from the Office of the UN Envoy on Global Education, the first ever 2015 Queen’s Young Leaders Award and the 2015 African Youth Excellence Award for Public Service. As a Global Youth Ambassador for A World At School, Joannes continues to mobilize and organize other young people to stand up for education, and through the HeForShe UN Women initiative he engages young men and boys to advocate for gender equality. Joannes took part as a youth speaker at a UN high level side event on “Ensuring the Emerging Leadership of African Women and Girls” and a press conference on “African women and girls speak on peace, security and development” organized by the African Union and the UN office of Special Adviser on Africa during Commission on the Status of Women 59h session. Joannes belongs to the Global Citizenship Working Group of the Brooking Institute, and is involved with the post-2015 development agenda process.