Published 1 December 2016

The Queen's Young Leaders Award winners for 2017 have officially been announced.

The prestigious award has been granted to 60 young people from around the Commonwealth in recognition of the incredible work they have done in their home nations.

Now in its third and penultimate year, the winners become part of the growing Queen’s Young Leaders community, a network of influential young change-makers who are being supported to become an even greater force for good.

All award winners will receive their accolade from Her Majesty The Queen in a ceremony in 2017, such as the winners from 2016 pictured above.

This year, award winners, who are aged between 18 and 29, are leading projects tackling global issues including education, climate change, gender equality, mental health and disability equality.

In the UK winners include Usman Ali, aged 24, from Glasgow. He has been chosen in recognition of his work to improve employment opportunities for young people from disadvantaged backgrounds.

Alex Holmes from Hertfordshire has also been acknowledged for his commitment to ending bullying in schools. 

Prince Harry, whilst on tour in Barbados on behalf of The Queen met an award winner and at a spectacular gala concert to celebrate 50 years of Barbados independence.  

His Royal Highness gave a speech congratulating winner Jamella Sealy, and all the leaders for 2017.

Jamella Sealy

Jamella is working to raise awareness about the importance of protecting the environment in Barbados and is a member of the Caribbean Youth Environment Network.

As well as teaching environmental science to children aged 11 to 19, she coordinates projects such as consultations with the community on climate change and beach clean-ups.

The Queen’s Young Leaders Programme was established in 2014 by The Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust in partnership with Comic Relief, The Royal Commonwealth Society and the University of Cambridge’s Institute of Continuing Education, in recognition of The Queen’s lifetime of service to the Commonwealth.

Each year for four years, the leaders receive bespoke training, mentoring and networking opportunities, and take part in a week-long residential programme in London.

“We are delighted that these incredible young people have been selected as Queen’s Young Leaders, and wish our warmest congratulations to each and every one of them," Dr Astrid Bonfield CBE, Chief Executive of The Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust said.

"The Queen’s Young Leaders Award is designed to inspire and nurture the talent of exceptional young people from all over the Commonwealth, so that they can create and lead others towards securing positive changes in communities," she added.

See a full list of Award winners and Highly Commended runners up and read more about their stories.