Queen's Young Leader

BSJ alumna Millicent Barty (Class of 2009) has been named a Queen's Young Leader, in the final year of a programme to discover, celebrate and support exceptional young people from the Commonwealth who are leaving a lasting legacy for Her Majesty the Queen of the United Kingdom.

Over the past four years, the Queen's Young Leader programme has formed a unique community of 240 influential change-makers who are taking the lead in their communities and using their skills to transform lives. Together, they represent 53 Commonwealth countries.

Millicent uses traditional storytelling to educate and empower young and underprivileged people across Solomon Islands. In a country where only 17% of the population aged 25 to 60 is literate, she set up a project called Kastom Story Time, which aims to preserve and pass on national stories and storytelling traditions through oral and pictorial techniques, while also educating communities on social and political issues.

Millicent's work includes translating political pledges and ideas into infographics to ensure that marginalised groups can engage in the electoral process and to shift traditional perspectives on the role of women in leadership and politics.

Winners of the Queen's Young Leader award receive training, mentoring and networking opportunities, including a one-week residential programme in the UK during which they collect their award from Her Majesty The Queen.

Millicent says that BSJ "played such a major role in shaping who I am...my teachers, friends, parents and the community as a whole were crucial in helping shape me as a person...BSJ definitely holds a very special place in my heart."

She hopes her award "can be somewhat of an inspiration for...current students, that we're only limited by our imagination as to what we can achieve".