A leading proponent of global citizenship practice worldwide, the Melton Foundation celebrates 30 years of shaping young minds through experiential learning, skill development, and intercultural exposure.
Through our fellowship and collaborative programs, we promote and enable global citizenship as a way for individuals and organizations to work together across boundaries of place and identity to solve challenges in an interconnected world. We have built a 500+ network of Fellows who carry out impact projects around the world. Our global events, local activities, conferences and engagements each year have opened the doors to many practitioners and talented individuals while forging partnerships that last.
Our association with the 17 UN SDGs further acts as an impetus for our Fellows and partners to join hands and carve a better future together through actionable, and sustainable programs. Most recently, when the COVID-19 pandemic struck, taking us by surprise, the Melton Foundation reimagined Global Citizenship for a virtual era and transformed the calendar into an eclectic mix of online contests, Townhalls, Panels and performances!
Before the over 500 fellows around the world, the dozen international events, and the impactful collaborations and projects connecting across continents, the Melton Foundation started little. With only eight students -four in Germany, four in the United States-, the Foundation took the first steps towards what would turn into decades of impactful collaboration and cross-cultural learning programs that would benefit thousands of students around the globe.
The Melton Foundation was founded in 1991 by entrepreneur William (Bill) Melton and activist Patricia Smith. Patricia and Bill took the step to build an organization that would enable a cross-cultural collaboration towards the worlds’ shared social, political and economical challenges.
As the Melton Foundation entered a new era, it continued to grow, incorporating into its fold Social Service Projects, New Melton Fellow Orientations, and our first Alumni Meet while strengthening the practice of Symposiums, cultural presentations, and cross-boundary collaborations!
As the Melton Foundation transitioned into the first decade of the millennium, it initiated Senior Fellow Orientations and International Travel Groups. Notably, it opened up to organizations and external speakers and guests, setting in motion the formation of partnerships that last up to this day!
With the inception of social media, wider avenues for networking, and reaching out to newer audiences, the Melton Foundation started the process of scripting its journey into the second decade of the millennium, incorporating major innovations along the way !
The year 2016 marked 25 years of the Melton Foundation's existence and was a milestone in its evolution as a community of global citizens. The years 2012-16 witnessed Global Citizenship Conferences, workshops, TEDx seminars and much more!
The years 2017-21 were rife with challenges, new opportunities, and unforeseen adversity with a global pandemic! When the Covid-19 pandemic struck at the turn of a new decade, the Melton Foundation, like many other organizations, had to evolve overnight.
Meet BMS College of Engineering
Campus Coordinator: Dr. H N SumaRead Bio
Meet Dillard University
New Orleans, USA
Campus Coordinator: Dr. Courtney WilliamsRead Bio
Meet Friedrich Schiller Universität
Campus Coordinator: Dr. Alvaro FernandezRead Bio
Meet Zhejiang University 浙江大学
Campus Coordinator: Prof. He LianzhenRead Bio
Meet Universidad de la Frontera
Campus Coordinator: Dra. Lorena VieliRead Bio
Meet Ashesi University College
Greater Accra, Ghana
Campus Coordinator: Rosemary KoteiRead Bio
Meet African Youth SDGs Summit
Meet Amani Institute
Meet Innova Pais
Meet Development Perspectives
Meet Ernst Abbe Stiftung
Meet GrassRoots Hub
Meet HPI School of Design Thinking
Meet AFS - Chile
Meet World Assembly of Youth (WAY)
Meet SDSN Youth Initiative
Meet Youth Advocates Ghana
Meet TECHFARM Hub
Meet EIT Climate-KIC
Meet Global Talent Mentoring
Meet NGO Major Group
Meet Bridge 47
Meet The Commonwealth (Youth)
Meet Araucania Verde
Meet The Wellbeing Project
Located in Bangalore, the Garden City and Silicon Valley of India, BMS College of Engineering (BMS) has been part of the Melton Foundation network since 1992. Founded in 1946, the college was the first private enterprise engineering college to be founded in India.
New Orleans, USA
Dillard University (DU) is our partner university in New Orleans, USA. A private historically black liberal arts institution, DU has been part of the Melton Foundation network since 1995.
One of our founding institutions, Friedrich Schiller Universität (FSU) has been a university partner of the Melton Foundation since 1991. Located in the city of Jena, FSU was founded in 1558 and provides higher education opportunities to over 20,000 students today.
Visit the FSU Melton Foundation website
Zhejiang University (ZU) in Hangzhou, China has been a part of our network since 1993. ZU has its roots in the Qiushi Academy, which was founded in 1897 as one of the earliest modern academies of higher education in China. Today, with more than 41,000 students, ZU is considered one of the top three universities in China.
Visit the ZU Melton Foundation website
Located in Temuco, Chile, Universidad de La Frontera (UFRO) was established in 1981, following the merger of the University of Chile and Technical State University in Temuco. UFRO joined the Melton Foundation in 1994 and has been a valued partner institution ever since.
Visit the UFRO Melton Foundation website
Greater Accra, Ghana
Ashesi University College (Ashesi) is a coeducational institution whose goal is to educate African leaders of exceptional integrity and professional ability. It is the first university in Ghana to adopt and blend the Liberal Arts method of education with majors in Computer Science, Management Information Systems, and Business Administration. The university is an independent, private, not-for-profit institution and has been a part of the Melton Foundation network since 2014.
The African Youth SDGs Summit (AYSDGS) provides a platform for dialogue on youth inclusion and participation in Africa’s social, economic, and political systems. Started in 2017, AYSDGS mobilizes stakeholders such as youth groups, CSOs, UN systems, governments, and the private sector to dialogue and exchange ideas and reflect on the way forward to increase investment and participation of young people in development on the continent.
The Melton Foundation has been an AYSDGS partner since its initiation in 2017.
The Amani Institute‘s mission is to develop professionals who create social impact by creating new models of education and training that enable people to develop new practical skills and experiences for their professional toolkit, a personal understanding of their own leadership journey, and the global networks necessary for long-term career success. All this while simultaneously reducing the high cost of a world-class global education.
Amani Institute and The Melton Foundation have collaborated on different events and training activities since 2016.
CIVICUS is an international alliance dedicated to strengthening citizen action and civil society around the world. In order to do so, they focus on three priority areas:
CIVICUS undertakes a variety of long and short-term projects in each of these areas, working in close partnership with relevant organizations to achieve our joint objectives.
The Melton Foundation has been a proud CIVICUS partner since 2016.
Innova Pais conceive innovation as a process that seeks new methods and ideas, solutions to problems in an effective, efficient, and sustainable way.
Innova Pais has been a valued partner of the Melton Foundation since 2019, regularly collaborating on Sustainable Development projects and working towards solutions to the greatest challenges of our time. Our local hub in Temuco actively works with Innova Pais in combined initiatives.
Development Perspectives is a Development Education NGO based in Ireland and forms part of a global network of curious, critical thinkers and development practitioners working for social justice. They contribute to lessening poverty, inequality and climate change through transformative education and active global citizenship. Among other activities, Development Perspectives organizes the #SDGchallenge, a project which aims to equip individuals with the knowledge, skills, and motivation to take informed action to contribute towards the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Development Perspectives and The Melton Foundation have collaborated on global citizenship activities and events since 2015.
The Ernst-Abbe-Stiftung (EAS) is a foundation in Jena, Germany, named after the German physicist, entrepreneur, and social reformer Ernst Abbe (1840-1905). Since 1992, the EAS promotes science, research, and innovation by providing infrastructure and funding for science projects, research centers, knowledge, and technology transfer as well as new businesses and young entrepreneurs.
The Ernst-Abbe-Stiftung has been an important Melton Foundation partner since 2005.
GrassRoots Hub is an eco-entrepreneurship and SDGs Innovation Lab with a global community of grassrooters making an impact and furthering social good. GrassRoots educate, innovate and incubate start-ups and connect accelerators to leading companies, research institutions, foundations, non-profits, and investors. The GrassRoots Hub is building a community aimed at sharing and generating insights and ideas to ensure impact from local communities to a global level.
The collaboration between GrassRoots Hubs and The Melton Foundation started in 2018 and has taken impactful turns ever since.
Together with the d.school at Stanford, the HPI School of Design Thinking at Potsdam University in Germany has taken a pioneering role in the development and dissemination of Design Thinking. The focus of the HPI School of Design Thinking lies in the teaching method, the cooperation with project partners, and the research and further development of Design Thinking.
HPI School of Design Thinking has been a curriculum partner of the Melton Foundation since 2015.
AFS Chile is a member of the AFS World Network, which develops active global citizens determined to make the world a better place. The AFS study abroad programs empower young people from all backgrounds with essential global skills—and the passion for making a difference.
AFS Chile and The Melton Foundation have worked together since 2019, to further both organizations’ missions by promoting intercultural collaboration.
The Center for Study of Science, Technology, and Policy (CSTEP) is one of India’s leading think tanks, with a mission to enrich policymaking with innovative approaches using science and technology for a sustainable, secure and inclusive society.
The Melton Foundation has been a partner of this esteemed organization since 2019, and we continue to work together towards advancing sustainable development.
The World Assembly of Youth (WAY) is the international coordinating body of national youth councils and national youth organizations. Founded in 1949, WAY has special consultative status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations (ECOSOC) and works in close cooperation with several United Nations agencies including UNAIDS, UNEP, ILO UNESCO, UNFPA, UNICEF, UNCTAD, and WHO.
WAY works for the promotion of young people and youth organizations in program areas such as education, employment, environment, human rights, democracy, population, health, drugs, peace, gender equality, community development, and leadership training.
The Melton Foundation and WAY have committed to support each other’s work and mission in 2020 and has engaged in various shared endeavor ever since.
Launched in 2015, the Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) Youth Initiative empowers youth globally to create sustainable development solutions. SDSN Youth educates young people about the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals and provides opportunities for them to pioneer innovative solutions to address the world’s biggest challenges. With this aim, SDSN Youth creates platforms for young people to connect, collaborate and integrate their ideas and perspectives into national and regional pathways for the implementation of the SDGs.
The Melton Foundation has been a proud member of SDSN Youth since 2017.
Youth Advocates Ghana (YAG) is a Ghana-based NPO dedicated to restoring hope, educating and improving the well-being of vulnerable children, young people and their communities. Among different projects and initiatives, YAG has been spearheading the organization of the African Youth SDGs Summit, a Africa-wide advocacy platform to further SDG awareness and attainment.
Learn more about Youth Advocates Ghana here.
TECHFARM Hub is an Innovation and Business Development Hub promoting disruptive knowledge, mindset, skills, technologies and resources to upscale young Innovators, Entrepreneurs, Agripreneurs and Startups solve pertinent challenges and become productive and profitable.
Learn more about TECHFARM Hub Ghana here.
EIT Climate-KIC is a Knowledge and Innovation Community (KIC), working to accelerate the transition to a zero-carbon, climate-resilient society. Supported by the European Institute of Innovation and Technology, we identify and support innovation that helps society mitigate and adapt to climate change. We believe that a decarbonized, sustainable economy is not only necessary to prevent catastrophic climate change, but presents a wealth of opportunities for business and society.
Learn more about the EIT Climate-KIC Climathons here.
Striking a common chord by mentoring talented youth, Global Talent Mentoring has forged a strong partnership with us. An online mentoring program for developing talents in science, technology, engineering, mathematics, and medical sciences (STEMM), it recognizes mentoring as the collaborative process it is and transforms motivated youth into achievers who shape our future.
The NGO Major Group is tasked with facilitating the participation and enhancing the engagement of non-governmental organizations in the processes directly and indirectly related to the High Level Political Forum. When possible, we work to organize positions on behalf of the members to be delivered in various United Nations spaces. Because of the diversity of voices and perspectives within this group, we are organized around thematic clusters which act as hubs of expertise on numerous issues and/or Sustainable Development Goals.
Bridge 47 mobilizes civil society all around the world to do their part for global justice and sustainable development with the help of transformative education. They offer opportunities for mutual exchange and learning, build partnerships and break new ground for practicing Global Citizenship Education. Through myriad partners and members, Bridge 47 is highly involved at international level and co-operates closely with the UN and global civil society networks. Building on the principle of lifelong learning and recognizing the importance of non-formal and informal education, Bridge 47 strives to contribute to a transformative change in society through a holistic understanding of education.
The Commonwealth’s 54 member countries have a combined population of 2.5 billion people, of which more than 60% are under 30 years of age.
The Commonwealth sees young people aged 15-29 as assets to a country’s development who should be empowered to realise their potential.
Young people have a proven capability to lead change, and are a vital and valuable investment for now and the future.
The Commonwealth Secretariat’s youth development work is delivered through the Commonwealth Youth Programme, which has been supporting member countries for over 40 years.
We are an independent, non-profit entity, concerned with systematically addressing the environmental problems of the La Araucanía Region. Fundación Araucanía Verde promotes the implementation of environmental projects, plans and programs, as well as the development of technological initiatives, research and implementation of solutions that improve the quality of life in the Araucanía region.
The Wellbeing Project is a global initiative co-created with Ashoka, Esalen, Impact Hub, Porticus, the Skoll Foundation and Synergos. Our work catalyzes a culture of inner wellbeing for all changemakers. We do this through model individual and organisational programs, credible research, global and regional learning communities, and storytelling.
We are enabling a more human-centered social change culture to unlock the extraordinary collaboration and innovation needed to address the pressing social and environmental challenges we face, and to build a better world for us all.
"My name is Henrika, a Senior Fellow from the Ashesi University campus/Accra Hub.Joining the Melton Foundation was one of the events that made my university experience special. The friends I’ve made through Melton are those I can truly be myself with, gain new perspectives from, and walk life with, all soundtracked by belly laughter."
" The Melton Foundation has played an immense role in shaping me as an individual. When I look back at the time I started as a trainee in the MF to my professional activities today in my career, the insights I have gained and continue to gain as a Melton Fellow will stay with me forever. "
" Being able to not only visit different countries, but to build relationships with so many fellows from my own and other cultures helped me to understand that despite the many obvious differences the fabric that holds the MF together is unflinching curiosity, a sincere sense of community and the drive to bring about change. "
" Joining the Melton Fellows Community is arguably the best thing that happened to me in 2021. As a Melton Fellow, I have had the opportunity to e-meet and engage with changemakers across the globe. I have honed my cross-cultural communication skills by learning about different aspects of the German, Chinese, Indian and Chilean culture. "