'Big Year' Ahead for Duo
Jessica Benton (GEW global)
Nov 22, 2010
Two pioneering advocates of global citizenship and enterprise will set off on a world exploration next year after winning the global Your Big Year competition.
Thirty-year-old Carielle Doe from New York, USA and 23-year-old Michael Teoh from Malaysia were crowned Global Citizen of the Year 2010 during Global Entrepreneurship Week.
Carielle, a freelance journalist, took part in a series of ‘Apprentice’-style challenges in Liverpool last week, competing against 22 other finalists in activities such as raising money for charity and producing a video promoting their hometown.
“I am honored and excited to have won the competition,” Carielle said.
“It will give me the chance to use my journalistic skills in telling stories about our travel through the power of social networking. Michael is the perfect partner; he is very calm and collected and gains peoples’ respect for his knowledge. He is also very proactive and his strengths lie in connecting with people of influence and networking. We will be a great combination as ambassadors for Your Big Year.”
Michael, a youth activist and entrepreneur, entered the competition for a challenge and to put his valuable skills to good use in supporting and promoting the spirit of global citizenship.
“I am thrilled to have won Your Big Year and with the prize comes responsibility to support the spirit of global citizenship, where every citizen regardless of race or country can make a difference and I’m ready for that challenge,” Michael said.
“I am looking forward to travelling with Carielle, she is great fun and outgoing and her excitement is contagious. She will be able to communicate our adventures through her storytelling as a documentary maker and we will make a great team.”
Your Big Year is a unique free competition designed to encourage global citizenship and social responsibility through enterprise with 24 charities benefitting from funds raised. 44,489 registrations from 168 different countries were received and finalists included contestants from India, Romania, Poland, Hungary, UK, Malaysia, China, Canada, Russia, Italy, Morocco, USA, Hong Kong and Australia. The prize is truly motivational and life changing as they will travel around the world, all expenses paid, starting in January 2011. They will meet world leaders, innovators and inspirational entrepreneurs. During their adventure they will live in different communities, learn leadership skills and participate in volunteer projects – from teaching children in South America to conservation work in Asia. They will be given the tools and support to share their experiences via the global media. Chris Arnold, chief executive of Smaller Earth, organiser of the Your Big Year said the year-long trip around the world would be “life-changing”. He said Carielle and Michael had the opportunity to fulfil their potential, develop their enterprise skills and stimulate their entrepreneurial spirit.
“I am ecstatically pleased with the winners of the inaugural Your Big Year competition. Carielle is engaging, intelligent and keen to explore. Michael is driven, capable and a perfect lead ambassador. As they travel the world next year both will strongly represent Smaller Earth, the themes of Citizenship and Enterprise.