What makes me so hopeful, so optimistic, is that so many of you have shown up, dived in, and embraced the kind of active citizenship that makes our democracy work.
When Michelle and Barack Obama opened applications for their inaugural Obama Foundation Fellowship, over 20,000 people from 191 countries applied. From that incredible pool, they selected 20 inaugural Fellows who represent 11 countries around the world.
Each member of the elite team is a civic leader who brings a variety of disciplines and skill sets to their work – including community organizing, healthcare, technology, and the arts – and they apply their talents to a range of missions, from empowering parents and teachers to improve our schools, to ensuring deaf children have equal access to literacy tools, to bringing trauma-informed care to the criminal justice system and refugee camps, to working with partners across the healthcare system to treat addiction collaboratively.
TFP bucketed the Obama Foundation’s fellowship winners and their extraordinary contributions into 5 common categories: Social Responsibility, Health & Care, Good Governance, Social Security and Education.
For more detailed information about the program or to see how YOU can join this team as a volunteer or submit for the next fellowship to contribute your own special talents visit the Obama Foundation .
Johannesburg, South Africa
Building a digital platform to enable Black South African women to organize around the issues that most affect their lives.
London, UK / Manchester, UK
Fighting loneliness and polarization in the UK by connecting seniors and young professionals to build new and lasting relationships.
Brooklyn, New York
Equipping new local leaders across the country to improve their neighborhoods through resident-led, crowdfunded community change.
Transforming the lives of young people convicted of serious crimes, equipping them to become valuable members of the community
Empowering families most affected by educational inequity in Colorado to organize for change.
CELINA DE SOLA
San Salvador, El Salvador
Forging partnerships across institutions and people to empower youth, mobilize action, and build community resilience to reduce poverty and violence.
New York, NY / Rwanda
Using community organizing and village grants to foster democratic capacity, inclusion, and growth in rural Africa.
Los Angeles, CA
Empowering justice-involved youth through arts, education, and vocational programs.
Granite Falls, MN / Boulder, CO
Using the arts to help rural communities connect across difference, revitalize their rural spaces, and create new narratives across the United States
Health & Care
London, UK / Greece
Providing psychological first aid to refugees, making mental health care integral to all relief efforts.
Building a collaborative, community-based approach to the opioid crisis, changing how addiction is treated in Ohio
Improving voter turnout by training elections officials to better communicate with voters and providing civic information through digital platforms.
Fighting corruption in Mali by celebrating honest civil servants.
Equipping a new movement of female leaders to engage their communities in addressing India’s toughest problems.
Building digital tools to help citizens push for transparency and good governance in Hungary
DOMINIQUE JORDAN TURNER
Equipping under-resourced youth to get to and through college, find meaningful careers, and become the next generation of Chicago leaders.
San Francisco, CA / New York, NY
Building a movement of diverse, upwardly mobile college grads overcoming underemployment through digital skills and peer connections.
NEDGINE PAUL DEROLY
Working with Haitian communities to create a network of civic leaders and build an equitable education system based on shared history, values, and vision.
Redesigning teacher training to address the reality of students’ poverty and helping public school teachers become community leaders.
Designing digital tools to give deaf children equal access to language, literacy, and expression