Apply! United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) Land Heroes Campaign (US$1,000 Grant)

United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) Land Heroes Campaign
United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) Land Heroes Campaign

Are you a youth committed to making a positive impact against desertification? Applications are now open for the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) Land Heroes Campaign 2023.

The United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) Land Heroes campaign recognizes and supports young individuals and youth-led/based organizations making positive impacts against desertification, land degradation, and drought. Through online engagement, the UNCCD raises awareness, shares success stories, and empowers youths as change agents in sustainable land management, engaging them in implementing the convention. Building on the success of the inaugural 2020 cohort, the second cohort of Land Heroes continues to inspire and mobilize youth to promote the UNCCD’s objectives.

About the Land Heroes campaign

The UNCCD Land Heroes Campaign is part of the Land for Life Programme. It showcases the youth’s dedication to sustainable land management. These organizations and individuals share transformative journeys through social media, videos, blogs, and our dedicated website, amplifying their contributions and recognizing both young men and women as critical forces for positive change.

The Land Heroes campaign aims to identify, celebrate, and support youth aged 18-35 engaged in sustainable land management, raising awareness of land’s link to biodiversity and climate. By sharing stories, the UNCCD inspires change, unites youth, provides mentorship, and showcases the transformative power of collective efforts.

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Categories of Land Heroes

  1. Drought resilience
    • Early warning systems: Implementing proactive measures to anticipate and respond to drought conditions effectively.
    • Mitigating the effects of drought: Innovative strategies for drought impact mitigation and ensure water availability.
    • Adopting scalable and inclusive approaches: Promoting strategies that can be expanded to larger scales and inclusive of vulnerable populations to enhance drought resilience.
  2. Land restoration:
    • Large-scale land restoration: Leadership in restoring degraded land on a large scale, contributing to ecosystem restoration and biodiversity conservation.
    • Community-level land restoration: Impactful initiatives restoring degraded land at the community level, enhancing livelihoods and resilience.
  3. Inclusivity and equality:
    • Gender equality and women’s empowerment: Initiatives promoting gender equality in land ownership, decision-making, and conservation efforts
    • Social equity: Initiatives promoting poverty eradication, social cohesion, etc.
    • Indigenous knowledge: Amplifying indigenous knowledge and practices, recognizing their vital role in sustainable land management
  4. Science and innovation:
    • Innovation: Innovative approaches in sustainable land management.
    • Technology: Harnessing technology for land monitoring, data analysis, and knowledge-sharing on sustainable practices.
    • Science and Research: Contributions to scientific research and evidence-based decision-making in land management.

Benefits of the UNCCD Heroes Campaign

  • Grant of US$1,000 for top finalists in each category
  • Attendance at high-level UNCCD meetings.
  • Publicity and recognition through interviews, media, and social platforms
  • Mentorship for leadership, communication, and project management
  • Opportunities to support UNCCD through advocacy, workshops, and content creationParticipation in challenges and innovation forums
  • Coordination with other Land Heroes for workshops and collaborative projects.

Apply Here


Ten Land Heroes are selected over two years based on criteria aligned with categories.

Key features of Land Heroes

  1. Youth engagement (18-35) in addressing land challenges.
  2. Role models inspire peers through dedication
  3. Inspirational leadership mobilizing youth for collective responsibility
  4. Passionate and dedicated to combating desertification and degradation
  5. Vision for change: Clear understanding and innovative strategies
  6. Collaboration with stakeholders for effective partnerships
  7. Strong communication: Effective online presence to inspire action.


Submission closes on 15th October, 2023

Apply here

Visit the UNCCD website here


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