The future youth want,
the action we need

Finale premieres on December 5, 2020


30th September, GLOBAL: BridgingTheGap Ventures, an organization developing and supporting youth-led innovation and youth talent development, has announced their list of esteemed speakers for the premiere of the YOUNGA Forum, streamed live to the world, including a ground-breaking VR/XR mixed reality format, to mark the United Nations’ 75th anniversary and commencement of the UN Decade of Action. 

The inaugural YOUNGA Forum stages a virtual youth takeover of the United Nations connecting 1,500 Youth Delegates across 100+ countries with key decision-makers. 

Confirmed high-level speakers include: 

  • United Nations Under-Secretary-General and UN75 Special Advisor Fabrizio Hochschild-Drummond
  • World Health Organization Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus; 
  • actress, model and co-Founder of MyEcoResolution Cara Delevingne;
  • Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Kailash Satyarthi;
  • actor (Riverdale) and musician Drew Ray Tanner;
  • actor and ONE Campaign Ambassador Calum Worthy;
  • actor (POSE), singer and LGBTQ+ advocate Dyllón Burnside;
  • co-founder of Born This Way Foundation and mother to Lady Gaga Cynthia Germanotta;
  • human rights activist Siyabulela Mandela;
  • global chairman of Global Entrepreneurship Network, Jeff Hoffman;
  • Ojibway Knowledge Keeper Chief Jim O’Chiese;
  • co-founder TIME’S UP Legal Defense Fund and president National Women’s Law Center, Fatima Goss Graves;
  • high-level speakers from UN Foundation, UNAIDS, The World Bank Group, Artists for Amazonia and many more.
  • see the full speaker list:

Launched on 28th of September 2020 alongside the United Nations General Assembly, YOUNGA will see a series of intergenerational fireside chats and keynote remarks to facilitate key discussions on ways to create a more inclusive, sustainable world, mobilizing greater connectivity between today and tomorrow’s generation of changemakers. Key thematic tracks of the Forum include advancing Climate Action and Sustainable Living, Equality and Inclusion, Future of Education and Work, Mental Health and Wellbeing, and Peace and Justice. 

A finale event will take place on the 5th of December, 2020 with a Global Broadcast and VR After Party Spectacle featuring awe-inspiring performances by two headline acts.

Emmy award-winning dancer, actress, singer and founder of KINRGY, Julianne Hough, will deliver a keynote talk and immersive KINRGY expanded fitness experience inspired by the elements during the Global Broadcast. Grammy award-winning rapper, songwriter and record producer, Pitbull, will perform his new single ‘I Believe That We Will Win’ during the VR After Party on AltspaceVR, inviting fans to be part of the first-ever mixed reality music video to be filmed in VR.

The live, immersive virtual reality Forum will be streamed to millions and delivered using cutting-edge mixed reality technology, producing a world-first experience that brings audiences up close and personal to performers and speakers like never before.

The VR afterparty experience, hosted on AltspaceVR, will include an ‘avatar mode’ which enables participants to virtually interact with one another live in a 360 environment. The innovation behind the VR technology is synonymous with the key theme of the Forum — the future youth want, the action we need. Participants will teleport to YOUNGA’s moonbase and embark on a journey around the world to meet youth delegates on an international spaceship with Mr. Worldwide, Pitbull through a world-first immersive mixed reality performance experience.

To ensure the Forum is fully inclusive for all, people from across the world will be able to stream the main broadcast programming on social media sites and OTT video platforms through KNEKT TV such as Apple TV and Roku TV. 

The YOUNGA Forum is the initiative of BridgingTheGap Ventures, a Canadian youth-led, and women-led social enterprise founded by accomplished youth mobilizer and esteemed female entrepreneur, Kelly Lovell. Renowned for its unique commitment to bringing about greater interconnectivity between industry leaders, key policymakers and next generational talent, BridgingTheGap Ventures strives to usher a new era for humanity built around pillars of access, inclusion, new perspectives, unity, action-oriented impact and innovation.

Through their 2020 Youth Delegate program, they have upskilled over 1,000 youth delegates—providing free access to 40 hours of leadership and advocacy training and guided mentorship sessions with high-level decision-makers and UN officials.

Speaking ahead of the world premiere, Kelly Lovell said: "YOUNGA is an incredibly important convening of influential young changemakers and high-level decision-makers to build a better future, utilizing emerging technology to connect people from around the world in an immersive, borderless event experience. "

Kelly Lovell with long curly hair, a sequin headband and purple sequin top

“The Forum relates directly to our mission in both bridging opportunity gaps and providing meaningful experiences for young people to develop as leaders and contribute to inclusive innovation and sustainable development. We are living in a world where the voice of youth can be more powerful than ever before and we believe now is the right time to form a connecting pathway between them and the decision-makers from key bodies and organizations that have the power to lead change. In doing so, we can create unity and sustainable impact that can reverberate around the world”.

YOUNGA is proud to be supported by strategic partners such as the global communications partner, The World We Want, a purpose-driven global social impact enterprise launched to unlock the collective strength of people, ideas, networks and technologies to accelerate the pace of progress towards achieving the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals by 2030. 
See a full list of YOUNGA’s 50+ partners and Impact Advisors here.

Join the conversation! #YOUNGA2020

BridgingTheGap Ventures

Kelly Lovell, Founding Chair

Request an interview or media pass for the YOUNGA's finale Global Broadcast and VR Spectacle on Dec. 5

Notes to Editors:

YOUNGA finale schedule of events for 5th of December:

About BridgingtheGap

BridgingTheGap™ Ventures connects emerging young talent with decision-makers—from business, government and community sectors—to build their careers and solve community challenges. Through events, skills training and research, our portfolio projects focus on three pillars: upskilling young talent, fostering inclusive innovation and investing in sustainable solutions. Programming aims to facilitate public-private sector collaboration, youth-led innovation and employer training for more inclusive hiring and education programs. Learn more about BridgingTheGap Ventures:

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