welcome to
kanthari TALKS

16 Solutions for social problems
Change-makers from 11 countries

kanthari TALKS 2022

took place on

Friday 16th DECEMBER 2022
Saturday 17th DECEMBER 2022


What are kanthari TALKS ?

kanthari TALKS are the culmination of our intensive, hands on, seven month social leadership program. Throughout the kanthari program, our participants from around the world work on turning their dreams of social change into a tangible and implementable action plan. These change makers then go back to their communities armed with the tools they need to challenge the status quo and build their dream projects.

Speakers from Around the World

Speakers come from Cameroon
Canada/Guatemala, France, India, Papua Indonesia, Kenya, Nepal, Nigeria, Philippines, USA/Cambodia


Nancy from Zimbabwe

Session 1: Youth Empowerment

FRIDAY 16-12-2022

16:00-18:00 IST

– Are we able to counter violence through peaceful communication?
– Do we allow ourselves to dream and break out of our traditions?
– Can our limitations be a springboard for a fulfilled life?

Social change makers from India, Cameroon, France and Zimbabwe work with children and youth in times of crisis, addressing topics of crossing inner and outer borders, creating peace, gaining confidence through unfiltered communication, and fighting for quality education for all.

Nduku Louis Tebi – Cameroon Date: 16.12.2022 Time: 16:20 – 16:40 IST
Empowering youths to build peace in Africa
In 2017, a civil war broke out in Cameroon. Nduku was kidnapped on his way to the University and tortured by rebels for two weeks. Later, he became a teacher in Sub-Saharan Africa. Here he experienced poverty, hunger, lack of water, religious intolerance, and terror attacks by Boko Haram.
Charlotte Cotton – France
Date: 16.12.2022 Time: 16:45 – 17:05 IST
Interpersonal communication educator and Taboo breaker
Around the world, women are victims of sexual violence. Research shows that the earlier a sexuality education program is delivered, the fewer damages men will do to women in terms of physical, mental, and emotional violence. Charlotte first launched a social project in Rajasthan, Northern India, on the topic of menstrual education and hygiene. She now opened her research to interpersonal communication to fight against cultural taboos that lead to sexual violence.
Gautham from India

Gautham Nc : (India)
Date: 16.12.2022 Time: 17:10-17:30 IST

Initiative to guide youth to be contributors to society
Gautham started his organization, Fireflies in 2020 with an aim to revitalize the individuality and community life of youth and children of Kasaragod by making them realize that each of them has a unique pathway in life, and the power to change themselves and the world around them through networking.
Fireflies will function as an alternative space and community that will provide an outlet to hang out and engage in fun or intellectual activities rather than lurking in troubled areas and getting involved in crime and drugs. 

Nancy Mbaura Norton, Zimbabwe
Date: 16.12.2022 Time: 17:35 – 17:55 IST

Quality Education for marginalized children
Being kicked out of her abusive marriage led Nancy to odd jobs to help her children go to school. Through this path, she noticed that there are many single mothers, who, like her, have given up on the belief that quality education for their children is at all possible. Therefore, Nancy started Tamiranashe Trust which provides scholarships and education for underprivileged children. Also, she empowers women, especially single mothers through adult literacy and a driving school. This helps them to improve their livelihood and standard of living.

Kuta from Cameroon

Session 2: Time to act!

FRIDAY 16-12-2022

19:30 - 21:00 IST

– Are we still able to rescue our planet?
– Don’t we need to change our food habits to save the environment?
– Are we prepared to save people and our planet from mountains of waste?

Four environmentalists and social change-makers from around the world, from Papua Indonesia, India, Cameroon, and Guatemala want nothing less than a mindset shift in the way we live, farm and deal with our waste.

Johan Andres Serhalawan – Papua – Indonesia
Date: 16.12.2022 Time: 19:50-20:10 IST
Improving livelihoods through better agricultural practices
Andre’s dream project is to work with indigenous farmers from the islands of West Papua. He wants to add capacity to their agricultural practices and help understand the potential in all the available natural resources. The aim is to develop their livelihood capacities

Kuta Mafa Cornelius – Cameroon
Date: 16.12.2022 Time: 20:15 – 20:35 IST

Preservation and restoration of the topsoil needed for all species to survive.
Kuta is a regenerative farmer in Cameroon. His goal is to create and establish a regenerative agricultural school for the youth and initiate a regenerative agriculture movement by equipping farmers to regenerate land within culturally relevant and ecologically appropriate contexts.

Anbalagan Hari – India
Date: 16.12.2022 Time: 20:40 – 21:00 IST

Effective waste management system / environmental protection
Anbalagan comes from a very humble family that lacked many resources, hence he grew up doing many odd jobs to stay in school. In between studies he worked in a Leather products manufactoring company, where he witnessed the journey of waste from producer to consumer and the role waste pickers or rag pickers play in the system. His vision is to ensure a clean &green environment and to realize a more effective waste management system that also improves the welfare of the rag-picking community. In the long run, he also wants to work on reduction of waste on the consumer level.

Laurence from Canada

Laurence Tremblay – India
Date: 16.12.2022 Time: 21:05 – 21:25 IST

Improving the livelihood of cocoa farmers
Laurence’s project focuses on the sustainable and fair production and sale of cacao in Guatemala. She wants to ensure the empowerment of indigenous cacao farmers in Guatemala, with a fair and improved livelihood and standard of living. Her focus is on organic farming and fair trade.


Oluwakemi from Nigeria

Session 3: The enabled disabled, from early childhood to adulthood

Saturday 17-12-2022

09:00- 11:00 IST

– What can non-disabled children learn from those with disabilities?
– Should blindness be a reason to stay out of STEM education?
– How limiting is a limitation?
– And: why can’t we, the blind, be problem solvers for an unforeseen future?

Four social change agents from the Philippines, Cambodia, India, and Nigeria believe in the opportunities for those who are disabled. They have trust that a life with a limitation can be celebrated as an exciting adventure if one is just prepared for it.

Deepu Kiran – India
Date: 17.12.2022 Time: 09:20 – 09:40 IST

Day-care centre for children with and without disabilities
Born with an Orthopedic disability, Deepu was abandoned in a railway station at the age of 2. Her experiences as a disabled child in an organisation and in the mainstream world showed her the big gap in inclusion and understanding between abled- and dis-abled children. Hence her dream project is to run a daycare centre with both abled and disabled children to inculcate a culture of tolerance and diversity in differences among children and their parents.

Josephine Esperanza Malan  – The Philippines
Date: 17.12.2022 Time:  09:45 – 10:05 IST

Educational center for blind children and teenagers

Josephine grew up in a poor family. As the only girl among 5 siblings, she was privileged to study at university. She took up a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering. In September 1986, her father passed away. This changed everything, she couldn’t finish her study and needed to work. It took her several years to earn enough money to finish her degree. At some point, she got to know about her nephew who is blind and was intrigued by his skills. She joined Future Vision Sighted-Blind, Inc, an organization founded by Lorena Acula, a 2013 kanthari graduate. Lorena’s work inspired Josephine to start a similar empowerment center for the blind in her own province.

Vanna Song – USA / Cambodia
Date: 17.12.2022 Time:  10:10 – 10:30 IST

Access to STEM education for people with visual impairments
Vanna was born in a refugee camp on the Thai-Cambodian border. He spent the first four years of his life there and then moved to the US as part of a resettlement program. When he was still a child, he was diagnosed with congenital glaucoma.
Over a span of three decades through informal and formal education to be able to live the best life possible as a disabled refugee, he developed a passion for science and technology. He likes to pay all that forward to Southeast Asia by making STEM or STEM education accessible to blind students. With access to education, including science education, students may have the opportunity to learn about themselves, our world, and our universe in a way that suits them.

Oluwakemi Odusanya : (Nigeria)
Date: 17.12.2022 Time:  10:35-10:55

Empowering blind women in Nigeria to become leaders
Oluwakemi turned blind at the age of thirteen. Her father couldn’t accept her blindness and took her to herbal doctors, but all in vain. Growing up with little information about the facilities and tools for the blind, she chose to learn to be independent herself which enabled her to be integrated back into the society. The support of her mother inspired her to start Eagle’s Voice which serves as an avenue to equip blind and partially sighted women of Nigeria with skills to prepare them for leadership roles .

Eltrud from Kenya

Session 4: Fight discrimination, advocate for mental health

Saturday 17-12-2022

11:40 - 13:20 IST

– What can be done against witch hunts and superstitious beliefs?
– Can we break out of our binary concepts?
– Are we ready to age?
– How can we include those who are marginalized in our society?

Social change makers from Kenya, Nepal, Cameroon, and Nigeria are addressing taboos, discrimination, and mental well-being.

Eltrud Okeyo – Kenya
Date: 17.12.2022 Time: 11:40 – 12:00 IST

A village where elderly are treated with respect and dignity
Eltrud was sensitive to the issues senior citizens face in her county from a very young age. Her affinity for her grandmother and older people in her community inspired her to work toward the safety, welfare, and health of senior citizens in Kenya. Her work will focus on establishing a village where aged persons, young people, and children come together, freely participate in various activities that promote intergenerational care, and live happily without practicing any ageism.

Claude Angwere Azah: (Cameroon)
Date: 17.12.2022 Time: 12:05-12:25 IST

Combating crime and drug abuse using art
Growing up in Cameroon amidst a civil war comes with many challenges. Claude has experienced many first-hand and arrived at a situation where the future looked hopeless and in which he felt not being able to contribute meaningfully to society. With the help of his mother and having discovered the world of art, Claude however took a stand. He realized that the youth need a way out, hence his dream project is to work with youngsters in his art school, enabling them to get away from substance abuse and crime.

Bibek from Nepal

Bibek Magar : (Nepal)
Date: 17.12.2022 Time: 12:30-12:50 IST

Access to mental health for the LGBTQIA+ community.
Bibek is an intersectional Queer youth activist and proud gay man, who grew up in a supportive family. However, he witnessed the plight of the LGBTQIA+ community within the society and realized that interventions are lacking when it comes to access to mental health facilities for the senior/old members. His project is to provide quality access to the same.

Israel Balogun : (Nigeria)
Date: 17.12.2022 Time: 12:55-13:15 IST

Support empowerment for homeless street children and young adults
A lack of family planning in his own polygamous family, made him live on the streets when he was about 9 years old. Israel did not know how to read or write until the age of 22. With the help of a good Samaritan, Israel is a master’s degree holder today. His core passion is to make sure homeless street children and young adults in Nigeria discover and achieve their own dreams through a one-year residential training program. He wants to prevent situations that cause children to become homeless or run-aways.



"kanthari TALKS is an event I recommend joining;
A unique opportunity to get inspired by change-makers
who come from the margins of society and who
present their solutions for a better tomorrow."

Narayana Murthy

founder Infosys

kanthari TALKS was a turning point for me. I first attended kanthari TALKS a few years ago and it was an exceptional experience - educational, emotional and inspiring; all at the same time. The 'dream speeches' of kanthari participants transported me to many different countries and communities, exposed me to deeply rooted social issues and reminded me of the incredible power of human spirit and will. It is an event without any boundaries; equally meaningful to everyone – students, professionals, social change makers, entrepreneurs, policy makers and absolutely anyone else too. I am eagerly looking forward to kanthari TALKS 2022!".

Ms Priya Joshi

Former Managing Director ,HR

Are you a changemaker ?

You know the change society needs… We just give you the tools…

Do you carry a plan to make a difference within your community and are you looking for a leadership training course to acquire the necessary skills? Then check out the kanthari Curriculum and apply to become a participant in the next kanthari course that starts in April 2023. Apply today at www.kanthari.org/admission

Since 2009, 240+ participants from 50 countries were trained at the kanthari campus in Trivandrum, Kerala, India.
This has resulted in more than 130+ social initiatives and organisations that are creating a positive impact in the lives of thousands of people within their communities and therewith contributing to a more peaceful world, every day. 

At kanthari our aim is to annually train 25 leaders:
50% WOMEN,
25% people who have a DISABILITY

The course is a final stop before starting an own organisation / venture /NGO or social enterprise.
If you are selected, a scholarship will be provided.