The campaigner from Nigeria has made a big impact in a short time and has been chosen from among almost 1,000 young activists in 78 countries.
Emmanuel Sani has been a Theirworld Global Youth Ambassador for only six months. But in that short time he has made a huge impact with his campaigning - especially on behalf of young children.
That energy and commitment led to the 26-year-old Nigerian being named as our Global Youth Ambassador of the Year for 2020 from among almost 1,000 young activists in 78 countries.
“It’s a dream come true for me. I knew the competition was strong when I saw the names on the list and the amazing work they were doing,” said Emmanuel.
He was one of six finalists nominated by their fellow Global Youth Ambassadors (GYAs), our cohort of young campaigners and social entrepreneurs aged 18 to 29 who are united in their passion for social justice and the right to education.
Emmanuel became a GYA in July and is particularly proud of two achievements since then. He explained: “Firstly is the 100 days campaign on my social media handles. I was able to broaden the mindsets of individuals on the importance of early childhood education.
My advocacy as a lawyer will be to make sure that anyone who is denying a child’s right to education is made to see they are denying a human right.
“Secondly, through the collaboration and support of other GYAs, I hosted an international virtual conference on early childhood education and how we can utilise recent technologies to solve child education injustices, especially during the pandemic. This conference had the Minister of Education for Guyana as its keynote speaker, with other important guests and participants from around the globe.”
As well as his work with Theirworld, during an eventful 2020 Emmanuel became a Justice Trainer for the Global Institute of Peace, Justice and Liberty. He also volunteered to help supply stationery and other educational materials to young children in orphanages and schools.
In collaboration with fellow GYAs, he aims to run a programme next year that teaches ICT skills to children displaced from their homes.
Emmanuel, who is from the capital Abuja, is studying to become a lawyer. He said: “It will help me to be able to advocate fully for children’s rights to education. This right to education is the fundamental right of a young child.”
The other finalists for Global Youth Ambassador of the Year 2020 were Ahmed Oueslati from Tunisia, Bushra Farooq from India, Fontoh Desmond Abinwi Fontoh from Cameroon, Iswat Badmus from Nigeria and Simbiat Oladoja from Nigeria. We will feature them and their achievements in a Their News article in January.
Emmanuel paid tribute to them, saying: “We are a great set of people and are doing so well in our respective fields. We are all winners because the goal is to ensure we keep fighting for quality education and everyone who is pursuing this is a winner.”
The Global Youth Ambassador programme, which has more than doubled in size this year, turns passion into power and unites a network of young people facing education challenges all over the world.
Despite the challenges of 2020, this amazing group of campaigners have demonstrated their resilience by adapting to online working, shown the strength of their collaborations by organising virtual international conferences and proved their versatility by contributing to community projects, national policies and global events.
Dawn Humphreys, Senior Youth Engagement Manager at Theirworld, said: “The Global Youth Ambassadors continue to be an incredible source of inspiration. They have demonstrated how the demand for quality education cannot be forgotten while we face growing challenges around the world.
"I’m so pleased that Emmanuel has been recognised by his peers for his outstanding efforts and I congratulate all the nominees and GYAs who work tirelessly to ensure the right to education for all.”