Application Deadline: 21 October 2022 at 12:00 PM US Eastern Time (GMT-5)
The Barack Obama Foundation’s Leaders programs aim to inspire, empower and connect regional cohorts of changemakers to accelerate positive and lasting change in their communities and throughout their region.
Launched in 2018, the Obama Foundation Leaders program is a six-month, virtual leadership development journey that seeks to inspire, empower, and connect emerging leaders to accelerate positive and lasting change in their communities, in their regions, and across the world. The Foundation operates Leaders programs in three regions internationally: Africa, Asia-Pacific, and Europe.
The 2023 Obama Foundation Leaders programs will take place between February 1 and July 15, 2023.
During their program experience, these emerging leaders, ages 24 through 45, build a strong community of support founded on a shared commitment to values-based leadership as demonstrated by President and Mrs. Obama.
The program will bring together 35 emerging leaders from across each region. Participants (known as “Obama Leaders” or “Leaders”) will take part in weekly sessions that include:
- Practical tools and training for deepening values-based leadership
- Individualized or small group coaching
- Community groups
- Conversations with thought leaders
- Cultural programming that showcases the richness of diversity in the region
- Curated spaces for deep personal reflection and interpersonal learning with peers
Please be sure that you meet ALL of the following eligibility criteria:
Based in Region: You currently reside in one of the following eligible nations or territories in the region in which you are applying:
- Africa: All nations, countries, and territories on the African continent.
- Asia-Pacific: American Samoa; Australia; Brunei; Cambodia; China; Cook Islands; Federated States of Micronesia; Fiji; French Polynesia; Guam; Hawai`i; Hong Kong; Indonesia; Japan; Kiribati; Korea, North (DPRK); Korea, South (ROK); Laos; Malaysia; Marshall Islands; Mongolia; Myanmar; Nauru; New Caledonia; Macao; New Zealand; Niue; Northern Mariana Islands; Palau; Papua New Guinea; Philippines; Pitcairn Islands; Samoa; Singapore; Solomon Islands; Taiwan; Thailand; Timor-Leste; Tokelau; Tonga; Tuvalu; Vanuatu; Vietnam; Wallis and Futuna
Please note that residents of South Asian countries are not eligible for this particular program. The Obama Foundation expects to offer leadership programs for South Asian countries in the future.
- Europe: Any of the 46 Council of Europe member states and Kosovo.
Citizenship/Residency: You must meet one of the criteria below for the region in which you are applying:
- You are a citizen of an eligible nation or territory OR
- You are a permanent resident of an eligible nation or territory OR
- You are a refugee or asylum seeker in an eligible nation or territory OR
- You have lived in an eligible nation or territory for at least the last 5 years, regardless of documentation status.
Geographic Focus: Your current and future work is geographically focused on creating positive change for your local community, an eligible nation or territory, and/or the broader region in which you are applying.
Leadership Experience: You can demonstrate at least three years of relevant experience in your issue area.
Age: You will be between 24 and 45 years old on July 15, 2023.
Language Proficiency: You are professionally proficient in English (spoken and written).
Political Campaigns: You will not be engaging in an electoral campaign for political office between February 1 and July 15, 2023.
Program Commitment: You can commit to fully participating in the entire duration of the program between February 1 and July 15, 2023, which will include a three day in-person convening (public health, safety, and security conditions permitting) in late June or early July, and up to 12 hours of live virtual programming per month. Participants should have no more than three absences in order to attend the convening and complete the program.
- The Leaders program offers practical skill building for social change, leadership coaching, discussion of critical issues, and small group support.
- Obama Leaders also participate in various virtual experiences and special events, including one-on-one conversations with experienced mentors in the Foundation’s global network.
Upon completion of the program, Leaders will have gained a deeper understanding of how values-based leadership advances their ability to enact change. They will be inspired to take further action, propelled by new ideas and skills. Most importantly, Leaders will continue to gain a broader continental and global perspective, joining a growing global alumni network of more than 700 active changemakers.
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