Sarah Mwikali

CCYDN Interim Co-Chair
CCYDN African Region Representative
Sarah Mwikali is a CCYDN Associate Member having served in the Executive Committee since 2018 as the African Representative. She has presented in various platforms on behalf of CCYDN and mentored other youth to serve in the committee. She is the founder of a youth with disabilities organization in Kenya known as Gifted Community Centre-GCC that advocates for the rights of youth with disabilities. Sarah holds a PhD in Diplomacy and International Affairs and has worked/consulted in different organizations including UNICEF, USAID, UNFPA, among others.

Daniel Grice

CCYDN Vice Co Chair
CCYDN Research and Policy Advisor
Daniel has a Masters Degree in politics and international relations and a Bachelors Degree in History and Politics.

CCYDN is an incredible network representing not just the diversity of the Commonwealth but the diversity of disability within the Commonwealth and is the foundation for disabled youth development within the Commonwealth

Devika Malick

CCYDN Asia Region Representative
Wheeling Happiness (India)Devika is a Para-Athlete, Youth Activist & Disability Inclusion Advocate. Co-founder of Wheeling Happiness Foundation India.

Devika has received many accolades for her work in disability inclusion and advocacy amongst these have been the National Youth Award Winner awarded by Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports India and the Queens Young Leader Award by her late Queen Elizabeth II.

Sabina Moce

CCYDN Pacific Region Representative / Advocacy and Campaigning Team
Fiji Disabled People’s Foundation Sabina works at the Australian Pacific Training Coalition as the Gender Equality, Disability, and Social Inclusion (GEDSI) Officer and represents on several different boards.Sabina is currently the secretary for the Fiji Disability People’s Board, a board member of the United Blind Persons of Fiji, and a member of the U.S. Embassy Youth Council, Suva.She is very passionate about advocating for accessibility and inclusivity for people with disabilities.

I chose these areas because I believe that there is a lack of representation of young people with disabilities at the grass-roots level, at the national level, at the regional level, and globally. I look forward to working with CCYDN and all it’s members as we work together to make a difference in the world


Selena Jn Baptiste

CCYDN Caribbean Region Representative
National Council of and for Persons with Disabilities (Saint Lucia)Having disabilities herself since she was fourteen years old, this ebullient twenty-four-year-old is keen on advocating for the advancement and rights of Persons with Disabilities, especially Women and Girls with Disabilities.Selena Jn. Baptiste is from the Fair Helen of the West, Saint Lucia, where she serves as the second Vice President for the National Council of and for Persons with Disabilities (NCPD). In her capacity, she oversees the Southern membership of the NCPD and is the lead on legislative reform, employment and advocacy for the Organisation. She currently works in civil law and hopes to become a qualified paralegal. Outside of law, Selena has an aptitude for business planning and development. With her talents, she continues working with relevant stakeholders to reach a point where inclusive employment is the norm in her country. Selena believes in advocating for those who are not being heard and encouraging others to be their own and best advocates, creating seats at the decision making tables, when none are provided

Divya Goyal

CCYDN Health Lead
CCYDN representative on the Commonwealth #YearOfYouth Advisory Committee Divya is a blind researcher and activist from India. She was Co-chair of the Commonwealth Children and Youth Disability Network from 2021 to 2023.Divya is currently working with the International Centre for Evidence in Disability, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine on disability-inclusive development in the Global South. She holds an MPhil in Development Studies from University of Cambridge as a Commonwealth Scholar. She has worked with UNICEF and UN Women on disability inclusion, and Disabled People’s Organisations in India on research and advocacy. She’s also representing CCYDN at the Commonwealth Year of Youth Advisory Committee.

Jahirul Islam

Team Inclusion Bangladesh

A young leader, entrepreneur, researcher, and disability rights advocate from Bangladesh. He is the Founder and General Secretary of Team Inclusion Bangladesh, an organization dedicated to promoting disability inclusion in all aspects of society.

Jahirul graduated from Jahangirnagar University, where he studied Government and Development. He has been working with national and international organizations since 2013 to promote disability inclusion, from skill-building activities to reframing thinking and establishing equal rights for persons with disabilities.

In addition to his work with Team Inclusion Bangladesh, Jahirul is actively involved in various organizations and programs, including the Rotary Club of World Disability Advocacy Group, and ICPD30. He is also a member of the Swedish Institute Alumni, the International Disabilities Alliance Bridge Alumni, and the University of Bonn-Rhine-Sieg Alumni.

As a researcher part Monash University Australia and Disability Adviser at BRAC University Bangladesh.

Jahirul is a passionate advocate for an inclusive world where people with disabilities can achieve their full potential. He was awarded the Jay Bangla Youth Award in 2020 by the Government of Bangladesh for his leadership and contributions in empowering people with disabilities.

Margherita Dall’Occo

CCYDN Advocacy and Campaigning Team
Women with Disabilities Australia (WWDA)Margherita is a migrant, queer, young woman with a disability from Australia, who works on a wide range of projects which advocate for young women and non-binary people with disability. She represents young people in policy, government and international spaces through her extensive work. She has been involved with the United Nations through the Commission on the Status of Women and the Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities, as well as disability justice in non-governmental organisations and larger corporations.

Shrutilata Singh

Sense India
CCYDN UNGEI RepresentativeShrutilata has progressive deafblindness, and has completed her Bachelors of Arts, and Diploma in Physiotherapy. She joined Sense International India in April 2020 and has been engaging with Stakeholders to advocate for rights of people with Deafblindness in India. She is involved in rights-based advocacy and also building capacity of family members and fellow young adults with deafblindness on advocacy issues. She has 3 years of working experience as a paediatric physiotherapist in early intervention center, in reputed institutions in Ahmedabad and Himmatnagar respectively. She also presented paper in national and international conferences as role model in Deafblindness. She has also participated and contributed as a speaker at GDS 2022, UNGEI, UNCOSP. Her areas of interest are Safety with Accessibility, raising awareness about Deafblindness, Rights of girls and women with Deafblndness, Inclusive higher education for people with deafblindness, Digital Accessibility and Technology support.

Irshad Qasim

Maldives Association Persons with DisabilitiesIrshad works with Maldives Association of Persons with Disabilities (MAPD) as an advocate at the national and international levels. His advocacy work focuses on education, employment, youth with disabilities, girls and women and engaging rural communities. He oversees the youth advocacy team and is currently studying in his Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science.

Joy Ubong

CCYDN Advocacy and Campaigning Team
Inclusive Action for Development Sustainability (Nigeria)Joy is a BSc holder in food and nutrition , whose passion for the humanity had journeyed into the civil space to reach many not only through healthy dieting awareness and counselling but through development issues and programs that speaks for an inclusive society, while amplifying the voice that are not heard.Her passion was spored up from the many challenges she faced as a child who grow with disability, which she fought through and is still fighting, with committed promise to advocate same for the vulnerable and marginalized persons in the society until an inclusive society is attained. She has positioned herself for many learnings and trainings which had built her capacity to amplify and gain inclusion for the concerns of Persons with Disabilities in Nigeria.

Sandra Nyawira

CCYDN Advocacy and Campaigning Team
Gifted Community Centre (Kenya)Sandra is an influential young leader and passionate disability inclusion advocate, providing frontline support geared towards amplifying the voices of disabled persons and marginalized youths for an all-inclusive and barrier-free society that values diversity and respects all human rights.Sandra diligently served as a Peer Counsellor at the Kenyatta University Wellness and Rehabilitation Services Centre – a role that ignited her passion for youth mentorship and philanthropy.

She is characterized as an initiating leader. resourceful and solution oriented, Sandra plays crucial pivotal roles in implementing efficient advocacy processes and techniques to enhance public awareness and participation across multiple gender and disability projects.

Sandra completed a Bachelor of Arts in Gender and Development Studies from Kenyatta University.

Odwarat Jacob Isaac

MUADS) / Oyam District Association of the Deaf (Uganda)Odwaeat is a junior Agribusiness consultant at Njovu Agro Enterprises limited, a farmer, trainer and a young Leader with passions for livelihood Development, inclusiveness, gender equality and human rights.

He is the CEO and founder of Intergrated Disabled Agripreneurs Uganda-IDAPU a youth led Agripreneurship project that specializes in advocacy, training, marketing, extension services and small enterprise development. In addition Odwaeat is also the founder and project leader of Reach A Hand Orphanage and Disability Outreach Uganda, RaHoDo-Uganda, a charitable community based disabled persons organization that was founded to advocate, increase access to health services, quality education, material support and human rights to all children and youth with disabilities,included those who have been orphaned.

Odwaeat holds a bachelor degree in Agribusiness management from Makerere University with over 5yrs experience in agriculture, disability rights and needs, mobilization, business development. As the founder of Makerere University Association of the Deaf students MUADS a body that impacted positively on the lives of fellow students with hearing impairment at the university and similarly my position in serving the interest of persons with disabilities in my community and Uganda at large.

Joseph Migila

CCYDN African Region Representative
Shivyawata (Tanzania)

Details Coming Soon

Jonathan Andrews

CCYDN Associate Executive Committee Member and Advisor Jonathan is a lawyer at international law firm Reed Smith, specialising in media law, and an elected councillor for the London Borough of Bromley (he was elected at age 28 and is currently its youngest elected councillor).

Having been diagnosed as being on the autistic spectrum at nine years old, Jonathan has been open about this throughout his career and is an advocate for neurodiversity inclusion in the workplace and wider society. His work in this area has seen him recognised widely nationally and internationally, including as a Queen’s Young Leader, European Campaigner of the Year, the Open University’s youngest ever honorary graduate and being named the UK’s fourth most influential disabled person in 2020 by the Shaw Trust Power List (which he has since judged for the last three years).

Jonathan was the first ever CCYDN youth co-chair between 2019 and 2021 and represented the network, among other conferences, at the Global Disability Summit and United Nations Conference Of States Parties To The Convention On The Rights Of Persons With Disabilities, as well as co-drafting the Global Disability Children and Young People’s Charter. Since coming to the end of his term as CCYDN Youth Co-chair, he continues to support the network as an advisor.

Heidi La Paglia

CCYDN Associate Executive Committee Member and Advisor Heidi is a young Autistic woman with multiple co-occurring disabilities and chronic illnesses.

In addition to her own self-advocacy, Heidi has an extensive background working in disability systemic advocacy, including in spaces working to advance the rights of young people with disabilities.

Heidi lives in Tasmania, the island state of Australia with her partner, son and three cats.

Heidi has previously completed Bachelor of Arts (BA), Bachelor of Philosophy and Bachelor of Arts (Honours) degrees with the University of Tasmania (UTas).

Krystle Reid Wijesuriya

CCYDN Associate Executive Committee Member and Advisor Krystle is a diversity and inclusion specialist and Co-founded the Enable Lanka Foundation. The Foundation is also the Sri Lankan partner for the APAC Microsoft Enabler program, which provides online training in data engineering and programming, cloud computing, and application development to young people with disabilities. Krystle also serves as the youngest non-executive independent Director at a trusted NBFI in Sri Lanka. She is a Community Champion of the Global Shapers for Southern India, Sri Lanka, and the Maldives chapters. Krystle became the first Sri Lankan to be honored with the “Commonwealth Young Person of the Year” award by Queen Elizabeth II in 2017. She was selected as one of the 50 young people to attend the 2019 Annual Meeting of the World Economic Forum. In 2023, she was named one of the Asia Society Next Generation Fellows and she is a fellow of the ChangemakerXchange initiative.