Meet our Steer Co.

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Mr Christian Martyn Kamara is the National General Secretary/Chief Executive Officer of the YMCA in Sierra Leone and Zonal Facilitator for West African YMCAs.  For over 20 years Mr Kamara has dedicated his life to service in youth and community transformation.

As CEO of the YMCA, Mr Kamara has designed community-based interventions focused on youth development and empowerment in Sierra Leone. In this role he has solicited local and international financial support towards youth programmes in various communities. He has played a crucial role in policy development advocating for the establishment of the National Youth Commission and popularizing the National Youth Commission’s Act among young people. He has worked closely with various agencies of Government in Sierra Leone including the Ministry of Youth Affairs on several youth and development initiatives.

Jei

Jeison is a Spanish and literature teacher and has been a volunteer with YMCA Colombia for more than 5 years. Recently, he has led the youth-led sustainable territorial solutions project. During this time, he has actively participated in several popular education initiatives, working with children and adults in marginalized communities in Bogota. His work focuses on literacy, literature, and environmental advocacy in order to seek positive change in the communities.

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I am Sahaza Ariniriana RANDRIANANTENAINA, I am 22-year-old and as a member of YMCA Madagascar I am happy to be part of this project. Currently, I am pursuing an MBA degree. One aspect of my life that I'm particularly passionate about is entrepreneurship. I am passionate about identifying opportunities and taking risks.

I find great joy in contributing to project and initiative by sharing my experiences and insights, as well as addressing the desires and aspirations of young people and the hurdles they face in achieving meaningful work.

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Ianne Aquino also known as Tintin, is the current OIC-National Program Secretary of the YMCAs in the Philippines. She started her development work as a Livelihood and Entrepreneurship Coordinator, providing technical skills to out of school youths in their locality to reduce poverty incidence and enhance the productivity of the young people. Simultaneously, she spearheaded a special project on Emergency Livelihood Rehabilitation for displaced people of disaster in the province of Albay, Philippines.

Tintin is also the General Secretary and the cofounder of the YMCA of Albay in the Philippines. She revived her local YMCA association which was dormant for 20 years and established the organization with functional facilities, notable programs and thousands of member volunteers and program recipients.

She earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Civil Engineering then pursued a career in community development and social services. For 18 years, transforming lives, empowering communities and conservation of the environment are her core missions in her advocacy works.

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Tom Valentine is Vice President of the International Group of YMCA of the USA.  Tom leads Y-USA efforts to strengthen collaboration between the US and the global YMCA movements with a presence in 120 countries.  This includes efforts to strengthen US YMCA global partnerships, the coordination of financial and technical support for international YMCA partners, the organization of global Youth-Led Solutions Summits and the mobilization of philanthropic support for global YMCA youth and community initiatives aimed at advancing progress toward the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

Tom joined the International Group of YMCA of the USA in 1996.  Tom has over 30 years of international development experience in Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe, Latin America and the Middle East.  He has extensive experience leading and/or managing collaboration with a wide range of YMCA partners including the United Nations, United States Agency for International Development, AmeriCorps/VISTA, the David and Lucile Packard Foundation, the Kresge Foundation, the Knight Foundation, Margaret Cargill Philanthropies, Delta Air Lines, Viacom, Salesforce, the Sierra Club, Lyft, Accenture, American Express Foundation and Wells Fargo.  Prior to coming to the YMCA, Tom worked with Catholic Relief Services in Ethiopia, Egypt, Kenya, Uganda and Burundi.  Tom holds a Masters’ Degree in International Development from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University and a Bachelor’s Degree in American Studies from Georgetown University.  Tom speaks French, Spanish, Amharic, Arabic and Kiswahili.

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Hana Sahatqija is the Global Youth Engagement and Entrepreneurship Lead for Generation Unlimited – UNICEF’s Public-Private-Youth Partnership. In her capacity she plays a key leadership role in introducing meaningful youth engagement practices in governance, partnerships, and programmatic initiatives, and ideation and rollout of green entrepreneurship programmes at the country level. She brings a decade of international development experience, having worked in many capacities at the nexus of social innovation, youth engagement, and entrepreneurship, including as Innovation Specialist, Chief of Adolescent Development, Innovation Lab Lead within the UN system. Her work has ranged from community-based, to national, and then global level, focusing on human-centered design programming with young people and partners, globally scaling up social entrepreneurship programming for youth and developing youth engagement and entrepreneurship skill-building curricula used in 50+ countries. She brings in a multifaceted perspective having worked for UNICEF, UNDP, World Bank, bilaterals and academia. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Rochester Institute of Technology, a master’s degree in international development policy from Georgetown University and an Advanced Project Management certificate from Stanford University.

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Pedro Fueyo has been involved in youth movements for many years, joining his local YMCA as a young volunteer back in 1991 and becoming staff in 1998. Since 2011 he is the National General Secretary of YMCA Spain a national leading youth service organization with 30 branches in 10 different regions in the country with a very strong focus on social intervention for underprivileged youth.

YMCA Spain’s social change theory puts youth in the center of its intervention, helping young individuals to identify and build their life project, as a vision for their adult life from all perspective. Therefore, we provide services, tools and guidance in the critical issues that can interfere in reaching that personal vision of a future: education, personal values, basic needs, housing and employment.

Unfortunately, Spain has very bad records regarding education and youth employment; early school leavers rate, not in employment, education or training rates (neets) or youth unemployment rate are some examples. YMCA Spain has put improving all these numbers as its main goal.