The United Nations Office for Disarmament Affairs (UNODA) and the government of Japan announced the Youth Leader Fund for a World Without Nuclear Weapons, a unique learning initiative for young global leaders. The program targets youth dedicated to fostering a safer world through nuclear disarmament.
Participants will gain knowledge of nuclear disarmament, non-proliferation, and arms control principles via online courses and an in-person study tour to Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The week-long trip will offer the opportunity to converse with disarmament experts and develop practical skills for contributing to related issues.
The program also imparts the lessons from the hibakusha, survivors of Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings. As these individuals age, preserving their narratives becomes crucial, making the program’s mission of preparing future leaders to carry their stories forward all the more vital.
They invite applicants aged 18 to 29, from varied geographical locations and nuclear and non-nuclear states. Candidates interested or engaged in international affairs, education, academia, journalism, and other sectors are encouraged to apply.
The program includes interactive online learning (4-6 hours weekly for four months), a fully-funded study tour to Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and the opportunity to participate in a youth-led conference. The participants will also create activities to raise awareness about nuclear disarmament in their communities. Upon completion, participants will mentor the next cohort, further promoting continuous learning.
The program covers registration fees, travel costs for those selected for the study trip, Japan-based activities, and a week’s accommodation and subsistence allowance. Participants must ensure they have valid travel documents and visas, with recommended global medical insurance.
Eligibility requirements include being at least 18 and not older than 29 by specified dates in 2023, proficiency in English, and a willingness to contribute to a nuclear-free world. No specific qualifications or previous knowledge of non-proliferation and disarmament issues is necessary, making the program accessible to individuals with diverse educational backgrounds.