How is the UNCCD Youth Caucus coordinated?

Global Focal Points (GFPs)

They are responsible for the overall facilitation of the specific constituency/working group/substantive area and its tasks. They are member entities that execute the mandate through nominated individuals. They are directly elected through the membership.

Regional Focal Points

They are responsible for regional participation and mobilisation for the respective constituencies/working groups, and may be member entities or individuals nominated by member entities, including CYI (if they can demonstrate substantial links with regional youth entities).

Thematic Focal Points

They support the coordination of a broad or narrow substantive topic of focus, as determined by the relevant policy framework or the constituency/working group. They may be member entities or individuals nominated by member entities, including CYI.

meet the team

Global Focal Points

Juliet Grace Luwedde
Global Focal Point
JulietGrace is a dedicated environmentalist and passionate advocate for sustainable land management and environmental conservation pursuing a career in environmentalism and advocating for policies that conserve natural resources and promote sustainable practices. Currently, she plays a pivotal role in mobilizing youth around the world to actively participate in the UNCCD's mission as the UNCCD Youth Caucus GFP. She is also an Advisory Board member for the Gender, Generation and Climate Change (GENERATE) Project by the University of Leeds, and an ambassador with the African Youth Climate Hub
Esha Mitra
Global Focal Point

Esha Mitra is a climate action enthusiast, climate advocate and educator from India, who is passionate about improving the scenario for the youth involvement in policy making and solutions for landscape challenges, and engaging young leaders to take stronger and bolder actions for the protection, restoration and sustainable management of land. She is acting as the Global Focal Point of the UNCCD Youth Caucus. She is an active member of International Forestry Students’ Association (IFSA) and IUCN Commission on Education and Communication (CEC). Her interest lies in management and communication in the field of environment education, community and youth engagement, green skills and green jobs.

Regional Focal Points

Dima Alrahaife
Regional Focal Point for MENA

Dima Alrahaife, A Passionate Advocate For Sustainability And Youth Empowerment From Jordan, Is The UNCCD Youth Caucus Regional Focal Point For MENA. With A Master's In Agricultural Water Management Engineering And A Bachelor's In Agricultural Engineering, She Combines Academic Excellence With Practical Experience. Engaged Globally And Locally, Dima Shows Dedication To Gender Equality In Environmental Action. Her Leadership And Passion For Sustainability Make Her A Catalyst For Positive Change In MENA.
Alex Lew
Regional Focal Point for Asia-Pacific

Alex is a migrant rights activist from Singapore. Recently he has shifted his work to focus on climate change and green tech. Alex graduated with High Honours in History and Archaeology (SOAS) and Law (Temasek Polytechnic). In order to fight against the stereotypes about migrant workers in Singapore, he co-founded Migrant Library Singapore, a platform of interaction for 17,700 migrant workers. Among his work achievements are his work experiences for several International Affairs organisations such as ASEAN Foundation, Asia-European Foundation, and YSEALI.
Asia PFP
Shaun Karakkattu
Regional Focal Point for North America

Shaun Karakkattu is a third-year Cornelius Vanderbilt scholar at Vanderbilt University majoring in Economics and History. Karakkattu is an Indian-American who was born in Dubai and grew up in Phoenix, Arizona. His interests lie in policy work, specifically education policy, Kerala’s economic model, and international development. He has worked at the State Department, USAID, Southwest Airlines, and most recently at the United Nations Foundation piloting a new Climate & Malaria hub. Shaun is interested in behavioural economics and curious about how decision-making works, essentially thinking about why people do the things they do and has worked through the Climate Leaders Academy to explore how K-12 students think about making decisions about their future in an ever-changing world.
Carter Cheng
Regional Focal Point for Europe

Carter is the Regional Focal Point for Europe at the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) Youth Caucus, directing the European branch of the official UNCCD youth constituency. She is also the Impact Officer of the World Economic Forum Global Shapers London Hub II, where she co-developed the infant hub into a multi-departmental youth-led organisation poised to reach 10,000+ direct beneficiaries through five sustainability projects. Between 2017 and 2022, Carter worked for United Nations ESCAP, where she co-founded Asia’s first-ever agritech research platform and encouraged USD$28.9mn investments in agritech through a flagship project. Carter is also a Tencent THINC Tech for Impact Fellow, a United Nations Local Pathways Fellow, a Nelson Mandela Residential Fellow with the Centre for Diplomatic Advancement, and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (UK).
Chevaughn Brown
Regional Focal Point for Latin America and the Caribbean

From the land of wood and water in the Caribbean, Jamaica, Chevaughn Brown is an Environmental leader working in governments and civil society to instil trans-generational change with how individuals interact with our natural environment. As an environmentalist he specialises in sustainable land use, coastal restoration and climate change mitigation.
Takudzwa Ashley Mlambo
Regional Focal Point for Africa

Mr Takudzwa Ashley Mlambo is the Chief Executive Officer & Head of Agroforestry and Innovation at Forestry & Citrus Research (FACIR), a vibrant youth-group undertaking The Greater Green Project, an initiative which aims to facilitate the planting and monitoring of 1 billion trees in Zimbabwe by 2030. Takudzwa is currently pursuing his Master of Science Degree in Climate Change at the University of Zimbabwe and has five years of experience leading disruptive innovations in the climate, environment and agriculture space. Notably, Takudzwa has been honoured in Ethiopia during the Global Startup Awards Summit in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia 2023 for leading FACIR as the Best Startup in Southern Africa. Additionally, he led FACIR win the 2023 Ypard Agriyouth Africa Hackathon for outstanding contribution to biodiversity, conservation and preservation in Africa; the 2022 Regional Universities Forum for Capacity Building in Agriculture (Ruforum) for contributing to entrepreneurship development in Africa among other international and local accolades.

Thematic Leads

Leitoro Adrian
Thematic Focal Point for Sustainable Land Management

Adrian Leitoro is the co-founder of Nature and People as One (NaPO). Leitoro has experience working with communities to enhance inclusive and effective biodiversity governance, conservation and ecosystem restoration. He is a 2022 Drylands Restoration Steward at the Global Landscapes Forum, Charles R. Wall Policy Fellow - a program by AWF and UNEP, was among 10 changemakers selected to pitch his project at the 2022 IUCN Leadership forum in Jeju, and a One Young World Ambassador.
Nancy Barisoa Andriamiarimbola,
Thematic Focal Point for Gender and Land

Nancy Barisoa Andriamiarimbola is a Software Engineering and Database Master's student in Madagascar and a leader in climate justice and gender equality.. She leads the EcoShe project, praised by CDKN for its climate and gender contributions. Nancy hosts "The Tanora Revolution Podcast," empowering African youth, and advocates for human rights, literacy, and gender equality. Featured internationally, she represents Madagascar at events, advocating for youth inclusion in decision-making for a sustainable Africa.
Xiomara Acevedo
Thematic Focal Point for Gender and Land

Xiomara Acevedo, a Colombian internationalist, leads Barranquilla+20, promoting climate and gender justice in Latin America. Recognized for her work, she's a Generation Equality youth grantee and an active member of the Loss and Damage Youth Coalition. Xiomara's influence extends to major environmental negotiations and local initiatives like the Women for Climate Justice network. Her accolades include being named one of the 50 women "rising stars" in ESG and a Ten Outstanding Young People of Atlántico. With a background in international relations and conservation leadership, Xiomara dedication to her cause is multipolar and systemic in approach.
Ruby Haji Naif
Thematic Focal Point for Peace and Security

Ruby Haji Naif is a climate justice, peace, and gender equality advocate currently pursuing her PhD at Cambridge University, with a focus on migration issues. She is the founder of VoiceUp Policy Hub, which is dedicated to advocating for the inclusion of youth, women, and marginalised communities in policy-making and humanitarian projects. Ruby has served as a consultant for various international organisations, focusing on gender equality, peace and security, and climate justice. Notably, she worked with a think tank associated with IFRC, where she worked closely with youth across different national societies around the world. Coming from a conflict-affected country, Ruby's work emphasises the crucial intersection between peace and security and the issue of desertification, shedding light on the urgent need for sustainable solutions in fragile regions.
Sambatra Kezia Rakotomanga
Thematic Focal Point for Food Security and Agriculture

Sambatra Kezia Rakotomanga, co-founder of AIKA, champions youth involvement in biodiversity, climate and land restoration in Madagascar. With a bachelor's in agricultural and environmental sciences, she's pursuing a master's in agricultural economics. Kezia's global impact includes negotiations and youth engagement within the UNFCCC namely as a COY17 and COY18 Country Contact Point and as a SB52 delegate. She was a GLF /YIL Young African in Landscapes Fellow and later a collaborator of the GLF Nairobi. She has experience in advocating for sustainable agriculture and environmental policy through various instances such as the FAO, the World Food Forum and YPARD. Kezia's expertise spans agriculture, climate resilience, and youth empowerment, driving impactful change.
Musa Ibrahim
Thematic Focal Point for Land Tenure

Musa Ibrahim is a Geography and Environmental Management graduate pursuing an MSc in Biogeography. He is deeply committed to environmental causes, is the founder of Voice for Environment, and a member of various advocacy and sustainability networks. Musa advocates for combating desertification, land degradation, and poverty. His projects include tree planting, clean-up campaigns, and documentaries. He is recognized as a UNCCD Land Hero, NAGGW Champion, and emphasises youth engagement in sustainable development. Musa aspires to influence policies for a sustainable future.


Olatunji Olaigbe
Communications Lead

Olatunji Olaigbe is a storyteller and strategic communicator covering agriculture, environment, and development in the African region. Olatunji is a strong believer in the importance of doing more than staging systemic issues by taking action to solve them, which has driven his work as a serial volunteer and advocate who have contributed to processes with UNFCCC’s YOUNGO, the UNEP CYMG, the UNCCD Youth Caucus, and an array of grassroot organisations. He is a recipient of the 2021 IOM West and Central Africa Climate Migration Journalism Awards, a 2022 fellow of the CJID West Africa Climate Journalism Fellowship, and a 2024 GRID-Arendal Investigative Environmental Journalism Fellow.