The Youth Citizen Entrepreneurship Competition is an activity within the framework of the UNESCO Global Action Programme (GAP) on Education for Sustainable Development (ESD)

2017 YCEC Finalist Kemal Abdela Shares Experience and Advise

outh Citizen Entrepreneurship Competition

Interview with Kemal Abdela, finalist of the 2017 Youth Citizen Entrepreneurship Competition in the Best Projects category and founder and president of O-YES Foundation Thailand

Kemal Abdela from Ethiopia currently working as a university teacher in Thailand and at the same time, he is engaged in empowering young people.

Kemal, what is your passion behind your choice?

Since I was young I dreamed to go abroad to work and get some experience in different countries and this is why I choose Thailand. I also like teaching and I got the opportunity of teaching and I prefer to be here because of this interest. I’m teaching social studies and sometimes languages. My organization is called Opportunities for Youth Empowerment and Success Foundation or O-YES organization.

Which is the aim of your organization?

The goal for our organization is to provide opportunities for youth and empower them to be citizens of tomorrow and our goal is to see young people who are empowered and catalyst for social transformation

As a finalist in the 2017 Youth Citizen Entrepreneurship Competition, how was the competition helpful to your organization?

The competition was very nice and it was really good for me and my organization. It introduced me to so many people and it was a good opportunity for meeting young entrepreneurs from different countries who had knowledge, skills, and experience. We were sharing so many issues in the Campus and even out of the Campus community. Some of them contacted me through email or WhatsApp and we were sharing a lot of things together. They helped me develop my vision and myself as well.
Regarding my organization, I’ve got some young people who were really interested to join.
I competed by using my project which is an international conference. The competition helped to get participants and I hope they will be able to come and join my conference.
The courses in the Entrepreneurship Campus were very nice. I use some of them to teach in my organization and share with my team and young people here at the organization.

What is your day-to-day life?

From time to time there is a change. I love to learn new things and meet new people and I want to change myself in my organization. Whenever I get a chance, I want to use it in my daily life as well.

What advice can you give to the competitors of the 2018 YCEC?

This is a good opportunity for young people where they can learn a lot of things and create a network, they have a good opportunity to share their experience. They should take the time to participate in the competition.
When I was competing last year there were so many people around me participating through voting and commenting and that was very nice not only for me but also for the people. They have to be actively involved and invite people who are interested to get some knowledge in entrepreneurship. I advise joining the competition actively.

What has your organization accomplished since last year?

We worked on a project for young people and we also have been working on our international conference that we will organize on August 19-22 in Thailand. O-YES Foundation consists of different educational projects, leadership training, art in collaboration with the local community as well as different NGO’s both local and international. In the future, we also plan to have global or international events in different countries.

How long has your organization been established?

It was established on 19 August 2014.

What is the one thing that you remember from the last year experience in the YCEC?

The competition was really tough especially when we were competing for the people choice award and there was a guy from Brazil that was working really hard and won the Prize. You have to be actively involved in the competition.

Find the video interview here:

Leave Your Comment →


  1. Great interview from Kemal Abdela. We hope that your project advances day by day. Thanks.

  2. Great interview. Greater heights!

  3. Nice project pal. Keep on rolling the ball

  4. Interesting and inspiring interview

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Timeline 2018

March 15, 2018

Competition launch –
Entries are welcome

June 1, 2018

Voting & commenting begins for all

July 31, 2018

Deadlines for entries

August 15, 2018

Deadlines for votes & comments

August 17, 2018

People’s Choice
Prize winners announced
10 finalists announced in both categories

August 30, 2018

Deadline for receipt of videos from finalists in both categories

September 21, 2018

Deadline for Panel of Judges’ selection of the winners

October 6, 2018

Winners announced at Entrepreneurship Summit in Berlin


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