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AYANA was a 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to catalyzing young people to find their unique leadership gifts and make their voices heard, designing and implementing transformational social change projects for their communities.

Big Tree


Far too often, and across the globe, young people are left out of decision-making on issues affecting their communities. Over the last 3 years, we developed and refined the framework for Youth Innovation Labs, programs that guide students through the process of creatively ideating solutions to local problems. Partnering NGOs and CBOs in developing communities received support to customize & implement these Youth Innovation Labs for local contexts. As a result, young people were given the time, space, and support to create solutions to benefit their local communities using human-centered-design principles to analyze specific issues and propose their own unique solutions. We also worked with the partnering organizations and the young leaders behind the project to make project ideas that emerge a reality


Students participate in a weeklong Youth Innovation Lab, run by a local partner. They grow inspired to look at their community for problems that need solving, discover their unique leadership potential, and learn tools to design community development projects.



After exploring root causes, students design a project that meets a genuine community need, learning to develop and pitch their unique idea. They implement the tools they've learned to create a plan, budget, and pitch for their unique project idea.



AYANA provides funding to selected projects to turn the vision into a reality. Past projects include a mobile library, pop-up library events, a hand-washing station, an inclusive ramp to classrooms, reproductive health talks, trash-pickups, and more.

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