Mobilizing Action

As part of the Bezos Scholars Program, every Scholar launches a project to raise awareness and mobilize action in their hometowns. These projects, known as Local Ideas Festivals, are designed to address a unique community need. Scholars build a committed team to support the project, with a vision of making a meaningful impact on their peers, school, and the broader community for years to come.

Scholars gain significant personal and team-based leadership skills through this project-based learning experience. They receive ongoing coaching and support from their educator, school, and community, as well as $1,000 in funding from the Bezos Family Foundation for up to three years. Because the projects are designed to be sustainable, many have been successfully running for over five years!

Since 2011, the Bezos Scholars Program has cultivated a special and committed partnership with the African Leadership Academy (ALA). Every year, ALA collaborates with our program to select five students and one educator who are tasked with presenting the annual South African Ideas Festival (SAIF). SAIF is an entrepreneurial development festival where youth (aged 14-19) typically convene for two to three days to discuss and design innovative ways to spark change in their community.

Learn more about the issues Scholars have mobilized change around and how their efforts have rippled out to make a positive difference in the community.

Featured Community Change Projects

molly and noah

By Molly Freed, 2010 Bezos Scholar

May 3, 2010

3 min

beyond the bars

By Shivpriya Sidhar, 2015 Bezos Scholar

Apr 11, 2016

3 min


2019 South African Ideas Festival

May 4, 2020

1 min

All Community Change Projects

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