Mariam Mohammad, The Diana Award

September 7, 2022

Mariam Mohamad, 22, is a young Palestinian refugee living in Lebanon

UNDP’s Young Leadership Programme (YLP) Alumna Mariam Mohamad, 22, is a young Palestinian refugee living in Lebanon. She has been recently recognized with the Diana Award, which is the highest accolade a young person can achieve for social action or humanitarian efforts, for going above and beyond in their daily life to create and sustain positive change.

When asked about her experience in YLP and how it affected her leadership journey, Mariam mentioned that YLP was a programme like no other, providing her with constant support and motivation.

She had gained knowledge about the SDGs and widened her perspective to engage with global issues and work on their local implementation.

Mariam had access to a thriving youth network and she made the best out of it by collaborating with like-minded youth and by creating joint initiatives that will benefit people and planet.

“Many of those connections turned into friendships which I am grateful for. The networking I did and the joint initiatives gave me the confidence I need to carry on with my mission” said Mariam.

More about The Diana Award

Established in memory of Diana, Princess of Wales, the Award is given out by the charity of the same name and has the support of both her sons, The Duke of Cambridge and The Duke of Sussex. There are 20 Diana Award Judging Panels representing each region or nation both in the UK and internationally. Panels consist of three judges who understand the value of young people, including one young person representative. Through a rigorous nomination process, the nominators had to demonstrate the nominee’s impact in five key areas: Vision, Social Impact, Inspiring Others, Youth Leadership, and Service Journey.

More Mariam Mohamad

Despite the challenges of life as a refugee, at age 19, Mariam founded her own initiative, ‘Alam W Mahay’, to erase illiteracy among street children in Lebanon and to introduce volunteerism among young people to help enhance their skills and unleash their inner leaders. Then in 2020, she founded another initiative called “Tamkeen” to enhance the quality of educational services for Palestinian refugees in Lebanon. Mariam has mentored over 3,200 youths, internationally, on various platforms and programs. She provides training sessions such as time management, public speaking, storytelling, and project planning - all skills she believes are essential for developing leaders. Mariam also gives motivational and inspirational talks, long-term mentorship, and capacity-building workshops

We are extremely proud of Mariam, as this accomplishment is only the very beginning of her journey as a youth mentor and advocate.

In the near future, Mariam will continue to mentor the youth, and is currently working on a long-term mentorship program to make sure that all the youth’s needs are tended to.

In addition to that, she is also working on a health literacy program within her social initiative, Alam w Mahay, to increase awareness about public health issues among underprivileged children.

And being a Palestinian refugee herself, Mariam is constantly looking to empower the Palestinian Youth Refugees, through providing them with access to resources and education through SAT and TOEFL classes, guidance for university majors, and advice on how to write recommendation letters.

The UNDP YLP Family congratulates Mariam on this milestone and is incredibly proud of her continuous dedication and involvement in youth issues and causes. Keep going Mariam!