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The Girl with Sneakers in Germany

As the Youth Chairperson of the Sugar Hill Youth Council, I am able to immerse myself into the world of a local municipality. We are a group of eight ambitious high school students who provide a youth’s perspective on city-related activities and in turn, receive an insightful background on local government.

Every year, all the local city youth councils from across the state attend Mayors Day where they are able to interact with other councils and learn about important state and economic activities in the state of Georgia. While there, I was able to meet Ms. Ulrike who is the Executive Director of the “Ambassadors in Sneakers” Transatlantic Human Rights Academy. The Ambassadors in Sneakers program is a four-week educational program striving to teach the younger generation the countries’ political structures and international workings. Its goal is to bring together the youth from both the United States and Germany and embrace our similarities!

With the primary focus being human rights, this educational course starts in Berlin and Kiel in May and complete its complete its second course in August in Atlanta, Birmingham and New York City.

The application was open to youth councils in Alabama and Georgia drawing a wide variety of applicants with unique experiences. I was pleased to be among the 12 to be selected in the program! The twelve students from Germany have also been selected and are perhaps just as excited as I am to take on a new experience!

For more information about the “Ambassadors in Sneakers” Transatlantic Human rights academy, please visit

To join me on this incredible journey, follow my Instagram! @nida.merchant