kenya 1On his last stop in a multi-country mission in the East Africa region, the Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth, Mr. Ahmad Alhendawi, attended the Global Entrepreneurship Summit (GES) co-hosted by the Governments of the United States and Kenya.

H.E. President Barack Obama of the U.S. and H.E. President Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya opened the 6th annual Global Entrepreneurship Summit and announced new commitments to promote entrepreneurship as a driver for economic growth, social inclusion, and secure communities.

During the GES Women and Youth Day, the Envoy was featured as a keynote speaker delivering a spark talk on “Providing Solutions: Leveraging entrepreneurship to solve social challenges”. Alhendawi encouraged the participants to engage through their entrepreneurial endeavors in the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals. He announced that the Office of the Secretary-Genera’s Envoy on Youth (OSGEY) is working to develop a global platform for engaging youth in the implementation of the SDGs. The platform will offer a gateway for youth engagement in the expected 17 goals of the Sustainable Development Goals and will provide various services to ensure that youth are playing an active role in translating the global development goals to reality.Kenya 2

The summit, held in Nairobi, Kenya, is the first GES summit held in sub-Saharan Africa, highlighting the entrepreneurial dynamism of the continent. The summit brought together some 1,000 outstanding and mostly young entrepreneurs and investors from across the world for dynamic, outcome-oriented sessions; mentoring; and opportunities to present and pitch their work. With a strong focus on African-based solutions, the summit showcased how investors and entrepreneurs from other regions of the world can connect with the continent in new ways.kenya 3

In his opening remarks President Obama called on African leaders to embrace women and youth entrepreneurs as well as anti-corruption initiatives, and asked U.S. investors to reward those efforts, as he announced more than $1 billion in new private and U.S. government commitments for startups. President Kenyatta also underscored the importance of young people stating that “the youthful sons and daughters of Africa are our incredible resource; they are reaching for a new future in which their innovation and curiosity will transform the world”.

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Rotimi Olawale, co-founder of is a youth development expert. For more than six years he has been involved in leading youth advocacy efforts mainly around the Millennium Development Goals. In 2006, he represented Nigeria as a youth ambassador at the United Nations Global Youth Leadership Summit held at the UN Headquarters in New York. Rotimi has held several global leadership positions including; member, UNFPA Global Youth Advisory Panel for 2 years; member, African Youth Panel. Rotimi is currently involved in shaping local, national and global policies to benefit youth and also leverage opportunities for young people. He was listed by the Nigerian government as one of 15 Nigerian youth on the world stage in 2008.