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    Abdellah Aboulharjan is developing the skills of young people in segregated French suburbs to overcome the isolation and poverty of their neighborhoods and become successful entrepreneurs. By mentoring young people to develop their self-esteem and competence, he is creating new role models who are motivated to help rebuild their communities.

    François Taddéi is breaking away from the elitist, top-down, and conservative model of the French education system that fails to prepare students to innovate and meet the complex challenges of a changing world. François is reinventing high school and college science education and laying the ground for a renewed, democratized knowledge industry.

    Simon Houriez is establishing a common ground for learning for both deaf and hearing members of society, and by doing so, is fostering equal citizenship. He refuses to admit that for the deaf to be educated and recognized in French society they must adjust to the communication paradigms and the education system of the hearing.

    Poor children suffering from chronic illnesses in Philippine public hospitals experience extreme stress and pain. Families and hospital staff also suffer from the physical demands of caring and the emotional strain of treating children with serious, often terminal, conditions. Maria Fatima “Girlie” Lorenzo is transforming Philippine public hospitals by creating a national system for psychosocial support for indigent patients, their families, and caregivers.

    Nicolas Metro is redefining forest preservation as a human development issue, one that reaches far beyond environmental conservation. By positioning trees as central actors in creating economic opportunities and addressing social issues, Nicolas develops simple ways for companies and local communities to find common ground where entrepreneurial solutions are encouraged to flourish.

    Mariana Incarnato envisions a society where young people see themselves as positive contributors. Focusing on cultivating their confidence and skills with a range of coaches, mentors and company employers, Mariana is helping them transition successfully to adulthood.

    Judi Aubel is improving the lives of women, children and families by empowering grandmothers, an abundant and underutilized cultural resource, to catalyze change in socio-cultural norms related to many issues, including girls’ education, early and forced marriage, teen pregnancy, female genital mutilation, maternal and child health/nutrition and intergenerational communication.

    Anne Roos-Weil has piloted a cost-effective medical system to drastically reduce the number of African children and mothers who die from benign diseases. Combining simple skills and cell phones, she systematically collects basic health data and transfers it electronically to local medical staff to inform proper treatment or medical action.

    Dennis Lennartsson is elevating sign language to serve a richer purpose in society by addressing the needs of individuals and communities across geographies and sectors.

    Mira Maier is redefining Germany’s educational funding landscape by bringing transparency into the sector, making existing offers more efficient and opening new targeted funds and opportunities, in order to create a more robust system. This allows all people who are eligible to start and pursue a university degree to actually do so – a key to creating equal opportunities in education.