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Global Citizen Announces Winners of 2023 Global Citizen Prize and Cisco Youth Leadership Award



Global Citizen, the world’s leading international advocacy organization, today announced the recipients of this year’s prestigious Global Citizen Prizeand the Cisco Youth Leadership Award. The awards honor young, trailblazing changemakers who are profoundly impacting their local communities in the fight to end extreme poverty, demand equity and protect the planet, in line with Global Citizen’s campaign to End Extreme Poverty Now.

The award recipients will be honored at a prestigious ceremony taking place during the Global Citizen NOW action summit at The Glasshouse in New York City on Thursday April 27, 2023. The ceremony will be hosted by Actress, Humanitarian, and Global Citizen Ambassador Nomzamo Mbatha and feature appearances by Sabrina Dhowre Elba, Chair of Global Citizen’s European Board of Directors and United Nations IFAD Goodwill Ambassador; Padma Lakshmi, Producer, TV Host, Author and Activist; Bridget Moynahan, Global Citizen Ambassador; and Erna Solberg, Former Prime Minister of Norway, and will feature performances by Natasha Bedingfield, Chloe Flower, and Samara Joy.

The Global Citizen Prize celebrates individuals who have demonstrated outstanding commitment to achieving the United Nations Global Goals by keeping the world’s poor at the forefront of their campaigns, and recognizes unsung activists who champion and elevate the most vulnerable in their local communities. This year, the Global Citizen Prize highlights activists across four categories: Climate Change, Civic Space, Sexual and Reproductive Health, and Food Security. The recipients will receive a year-long programme of support from Global Citizen, together with a donation to their organization. Proud Global Partners of the Global Citizen Prize 2023 include Cisco, Citi and P&G.

The Global Citizen Prize 2023 awardees are:
Deja Foxx, Activist and Founder of GenZ Girl Gang, from the U.S.,
Ineza Umuhoza Grace, Global Coordinator and Cofounder, Loss and Damage Youth Coalition, from Rwanda;
Pashtana Durrani, Social and Political Rights Activist, Executive Director, LEARN Afghanistan, from Afghanistan;
Wangari Kuria, Founder and CEO of Farmer on Fire Ltd, from Kenya.


The Cisco Youth Leadership Award was established in 2018 by Cisco and Global Citizen to celebrate an individual aged between 18-30 who has contributed meaningfully towards the goal of ending extreme poverty in their community, through their leadership, dedication, and innovation. The prize winner will receive a US$250,000 grant to their organization to enable its continued growth. Candidates were judged, by a panel including representatives from Global Citizen, Cisco, esteemed activists and leaders in the international development field, against five equally-weighted criteria, including impact, vision, catalyst, global citizenship, and technology innovation.

This year’s Cisco Youth Leadership Award recipient is Nkosana Butholenkosi Masuku, Founder and CEO of Phenomtech-Sciency Learning, from Zimbabwe. A Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) teacher working at a rural school, Nkosana created Sciency Learning as a result of the lack of resources for teaching STEM in Zimbabwe’s rural communities. Sciency’s objective is to provide low-cost STEM education to students across Zimbabwe in a bid to reduce dropout rates and advance STEM development across the country. Nkosana is an alumnus of the Mandela Washington Fellowship and an award-winning entrepreneur.

“STEM education is critical for opening doors of opportunity, and Nkosana’s vital work utilizing innovative technology to offer STEM learning to rural schools across Zimbabwe is transformative,” said Fran Katsoudas, EVP and Chief People, Policy & Purpose Officer of Cisco. “Investing in education reaps a lifetime of benefits, not only for children but also for their communities. The work of young leaders like Nkosana is helping to usher in a more inclusive future by empowering youth in Africa and around the world to thrive in the digital economy.”

“It is an honor to recognize these inspirational, young changemakers who are advancing the fight to end extreme poverty,” said Liza Henshaw, President, Global Citizen. “The world needs innovators who will courageously pursue positive change in their local communities, and inspire others to action through their ingenuity.”


For more information about the Global Citizen Prize: Citizen Award 2023, Cisco Youth Leadership Award, and Global Citizen NOW visit and follow @GlblCtzn Twitter, Facebook and Instagram using #GlobalCitizen.

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