Samantha MiyandaYoung Change-Maker
Samantha Miyanda is an IOC Young Change-Maker who developed a girls’ mentoring programme in Zambia, empowering young women in her country through sport and leadership education.
When the Olympic Youth Development Centre (OYDC) opened in Lusaka, Zambia, Miyanda joined her first football team at the age of 18. Inspired by her newfound confidence and love of sport, she applied to represent Zambia as a Young Change-Maker at the 2014 Youth Olympic Games in Nanjing. When she returned from the Games, she took the values of friendship, excellence and respect she saw on display and channelled them into a Young Change-Maker+ project that focuses on girls’ mentorship, empowerment and athletic leadership.
Through her project, Miyanda invited high-profile Zambian women from the sporting world – such as National Director of Sport Bessie Chelemu, Executive Director of the Zambian National Olympic Committee Brenda Chipande and head coach of the women’s football team Enala Phiri – to serve as mentors to a group of young female leaders, discussing topics like leadership, ambition and empowerment. The girls participated in workshops and seminars that covered topics like financial literacy, nutrition, professional development and HIV/AIDS prevention, among others. Additionally, they were trained to become mentors themselves, so they were equipped to transfer their learnings to other young girls in their communities and build a positive cycle of female education and empowerment.
Miyanda’s goal is to create opportunities for girls to excel in a traditionally male-dominated field. She is completing her final year at university and interning at the Ministry of Sport, where she aims to continue making strides in the development of sport in Zambia and beyond.