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Moonshot: Youth Change-Makers Launch Innovative Solutions to 21st Century Problems

2024 Catalyst Fund Awardee
Yemi A.D.
Catalyst Fund

In 2023, the World Economic Forum published the Global Risks Report, outlining society’s most pressing global challenges — including (but not limited to) the cost of living crisis, economic downturn, economic warfare, climate action hiatus, multiple wars, and political radicalization. Pervasive threats to society require increasingly innovative and interlocking solutions. Youth leaders can serve as inspired changemakers to bridge gaps, unite polarized groups, and engage peers and intergenerational stakeholders alike towards novel solutions to complex problems. Yet, current global leadership is stubbornly aged, underrepresenting youth at every turn. Furthermore, existing systems lack mechanisms to bring youth into the leadership pipeline, limiting the potential for younger minds to help navigate and solve the problems affecting them most.

My fellowship let me step out of my shadow and see that everyone has similar issues. It doesn't matter who you are. If you get your values straight, you have so much to learn from each other.

Yemi A.D., Artist, Founder and CEO, Moonshot

This stagnation is increasingly untenable. 44% of Americans are somewhat more concerned about what is happening in the world than in past years, with even larger percentages, 69% and 66% interested in solutions involving equality and sustainability, respectively.

To address these growing concerns and rejuvenate society’s leadership models, Yemi A. D., founded the Moonshot Platform. The platform seeks to inspire 1 million young change-makers globally, and to identify and provide tangible support, mentorship, and resources to the most promising among them. Moonshot assists these innovators to think and analyze critically, and adopt a problem solving mindset. It also creates an intergenerational bridge between current and future leaders through mutually respectful mentorship.

Yemi is a multidisciplinary professional himself; an acclaimed choreographer and director in addition to the founder of a major creative agency. Yemi’s vision for Moonshot embraces transformative and collaborative innovation. Moonshot accelerates youth-driven social innovation through artistic practices and experiential learning, with a focus on leveraging diversity and difference. To do so, the platform hosts a Young Leaders Camp that engages 50 global youth in an “immersive classroom,” including visits to art galleries and museums to foster thought-provoking conversations and sensory encounters that promote collaboration, critical thinking, and thought-provoking conversations. The camp is a holistic experience, with a 70% focus on personal development through inner growth, body movement, breathwork, and sound healing, and a 30% focus on specific social venture challenges presented by youth participants.

million people reached within the first 2 years
of participants feel they have developed a stronger desire to make a positive impact
large-scale virtual conferences involving over 60 speakers and 600 international leaders

The platform also recognizes innovative thinkers through Moonshot Awards, which identify young change-makers aged between 15 and 30 who are helping lead creative community-led solutions to address the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. Awardees are supported financially, as well as being connected to leaders in similar fields, and given access to public relations resources to increase visibility. The awards focus on future start-ups, technological learning, forced displacement, emergency response, and monumental change efforts. The platform’s ability to spark creativity, expedite network building, and increase the visibility of youth success has broadened the narrative of who drives solutions.

submissions for Moonshot Awards from 88 countries as of 2022
of young leaders reported increased introspection about their social impact role/platform
vies on Youtbe and 600k reached through social media


Yemi founded JAD Productions, a leading European creative agency helping brands and their CEOs rethink innovative approaches towards communication strategy and company culture. He is a multidisciplinary professional with backgrounds as a choreographer, director, and social innovator. He founded Moonshot to inspire 1 million young change-makers globally to identify and provide tangible support, mentorship, and resources to the most promising among them.

Yemi and Moonshot awardees meeting with Madame Deputy Secretary General, Amina Mohammed

Moonshot camp attendees

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