Coca-Cola Millennial Voices members Mallory Meissner, Vandoline Ivey and Shawn Maddox represented their country and their company as three of 35 delegates sent by Coca-Cola to the One Young World Summit in Ottawa, Canada. One Young World is a charity that hosts an annual summit to convene the brightest young people from around the globe and empower them to make lasting connections to create positive change.
Unlike any other event, One Young World gives young people the kind of media platform and forum ordinarily afforded only to leaders of nations and corporations. The summit consists of young, passionate leaders in different areas who are dedicated to driving change in their communities. They come from a wide area of global sectors, including business, NGOs and academia, and are joined by world leaders who serve as One Young World counsellors. This year's counsellors included Mary Robinson, Sir Bob Geldof, Kofi Annan, John Landau, Professor Muhammad Yunus and Emma Watson.
At the summit, delegates debate, formulate and share innovative solutions for the pressing issues facing the world. They undergo intense sessions in the areas and topics of education, peace and security, global business, environment, human rights and health.
After completing the rigorous summit, each One Young World delegate becomes a One Young World Ambassador. The Ambassadors then return to their respective countries and organizations to work on their own initiatives or lend the power of the One Young World network to those initiatives already in existence. Coca-Cola Millennial Voices members who attended were truly impacted for the better after they had the amazing opportunity to attend and experience the Summit. Here's what they had to say.
“The One Young World Summit will forever change my views on how I see the world. I was truly humbled by this experience and thankful for this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. I learned that we as young leaders all have platforms that can change the world. It only has to start with one person to drive a movement. I now have a newfound purpose and feel completely empowered to change my community and the world for the better... because every little thing counts.” -Vandoline Ivey
“I am extremely thankful to be chosen to take part in the One Young World Summit as it truly was an eye-opening experience. I have gained a newfound perspective on the world and obtained valuable insight into the UN’s aspirational global goals for sustainable development. I now feel that I have the requisite knowledge and tools to go forth and make a positive impact in my community and the world.” -Shawn Maddox
“The One Young World Summit was a remarkable and life-changing experience. I left with a renewed belief in the ability of global business to be a force for good and, in the power of the Coca-Cola system, to be a change agent. While global issues of poverty, unemployment and inequality can seem overwhelming, every opportunity can make a difference and I can solve a small piece of these problems. One of my favorite sessions was around technological advancements and the ethics surrounding them. It instilled in me that in an ever changing environment, you must have integrity, respect and transparency and to always have the courage to speak up because silence is not an option. I know by putting these learnings into practice I will push myself and my company to continue to be a force for good.” -Mallory Meissner
The One Young World network has grown to a community of more than 7,000 young leaders all around the world. Approximately 8.9 million people have been positively impacted by One Young World Ambassadors. For every $1 invested, One Young World delivers $12 of value.
Coca-Cola’s One Young World Ambassadors leveraged the momentum from the conference to create an implementation roadmap in order to capitalize on the ideas brought back. They then presented a number of initiatives to senior leadership on the topics of gender equality, no hunger, philanthropy and reduced economic inequalities.