Hugh Evans (humanitarian)

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Hugh Evans
Evans c. 2017
Hugh Evans

(1983-03-04) 4 March 1983 (age 40)
Alma materMonash University
Known forHumanitarianism and youth voluntary leadership

Hugh Evans (born 4 March 1983) is an Australian humanitarian. Evans is the co-founder of both The Oaktree Foundation and Global Citizen, formerly called Global Poverty Project, and Executive Producer of One World:Together at Home and Global Citizen Live. He has received domestic and international accolades for his work in promoting youth advocacy and volunteerism in order to reduce extreme poverty in developing countries.


Evans grew up in Kew, in the eastern suburbs of Melbourne and was educated at Carey Baptist Grammar School where, aged 12 years, he participated in World Vision's 40-hour famine out of a concern for poverty in developing countries.[citation needed] The following year, Evans subsequently won a World Vision-sponsored contest to visit development programs in the Philippines and was moved by his encounters in the slums of Manila.[citation needed] Evans went on exchange to Woodstock School[1] in the Himalayas in India two years later. Recalling his experience from notes in his memoir at the time of his return:[2]

The greatest injustice I witnessed this year happened, not when comparing the poor of India to the rich of India, but upon arriving home. I couldn't understand why we as Australians are so determined, even to the point of complaining, to get the latest mobile phone ... then comparing this to walking through the market of India and seeing a man with no legs, simply a piece of rubber tied to his waist to stop the skin on his pelvis from scraping away ... all he asks for is the equivalent of 20 cents.

A further trip to the rural valley communities of the KwaZulu-Natal province in South Africa, where he volunteered as a youth ambassador with World Vision, saw him return to Melbourne in 2003 moved to bring about social change.[2]

In 2008, Evans graduated with law and science degrees at Monash University.

Youth advocacy[edit]

Oaktree Foundation[edit]

In 2003 Evans, together with Nicolas Mackay established The Oaktree Foundation, an Australian-based non-government organisation that provides aid and development to countries in need across the Asia Pacific and African regions. Oaktree is run by young people aged 16 to 26, overseen by an advisory board, and has since grown into an effective vehicle for youth advocacy in Australia providing for education in developing countries.[2] Evans was the inaugural chief executive officer, standing down in 2008, and continues with The Oaktree Foundation in an advisory capacity.[3]

Evans' early inspiration and support of The Oaktree Foundation was provided by St Hilary's, a large evangelical Anglican parish in the eastern suburbs of Melbourne.[4]

Global Citizen and The Global Poverty Project[edit]

Inspired by Al Gore's film An Inconvenient Truth, Evans and Simon Moss established the Global Poverty Project, a community education group that aims to increase awareness of, and action towards fighting extreme poverty.[5][6][7] The Global Poverty Project was started in 2008 with a US$60,000 grant from the United Nations and an A$350,000 grant from AusAID.[8] Included in Evans' activism for the Global Poverty Project is the Make Poverty History campaign and concerts in Australia.[9]

Awards and other leadership roles[edit]

In 2001, Evans was one of sixteen Australian representatives to participate in The Hague International Model United Nations (THIMUN) held in The Hague, Netherlands; and in 2003, he was awarded the Young Victorian of the Year.[10] The following year, Evans was named as the Young Australian of the Year for his contribution in promoting youth advocacy through the founding of The Oaktree Foundation.[11][12][13][14] In 2004 Evans was also awarded the title of an Outstanding Young Persons of the World, one of ten young people recognised annually by the Junior Chamber International. Evans's award for humanitarianism and/or voluntary leadership in that year was shared with Queen Rania of Jordan and Ch'ng Joo Beng of Malaysia.[2]

In 2008, Evans, together with the federal Minister for Youth, Kate Ellis MP, served as co-chair of the 2020 Youth Summit, a precursor to the 2020 Summit.[2]



  1. ^ Russell, Dalia Majumder; Uppal, Rohini (2011). "Class of 2001 Jottings" (PDF). Quadrangle: Woodstock School Alumni Magazine. CIV: 98. Archived from the original (PDF) on 8 April 2014. Retrieved 8 April 2014.
  2. ^ a b c d e Farouque, Farah (15 March 2008). "Out to change the world". The Age. Australia. Retrieved 14 October 2012.
  3. ^ Hewitt, Rachel (10 May 2008). "Sowing seeds of change". Herald Sun. Retrieved 14 October 2012.
  4. ^ West, Andrew (29 August 2012). "New CEO for the Oaktree Foundation" (transcript). Religion and Ethics Report. Australia: ABC Radio National. Retrieved 13 October 2012.
  5. ^ White, Cassie (25 June 2009). "Gen Y-not tackles world poverty". ABC News. Australia. Retrieved 14 October 2012.
  6. ^ "Australia to launch global anti-poverty campaign". The West Australian. AAP. 18 May 2009. Archived from the original on 7 July 2012. Retrieved 14 October 2012.
  7. ^ Rowbotham, Jill (17 September 2008). "Young and ready to change world". The Australian. Retrieved 14 October 2012.
  8. ^ "Global Poverty Project CEO to speak at WCU, kick off campus effort". Western Carolinian. United States: Western Carolina University. 19 August 2011. Retrieved 14 October 2012.
  9. ^ "Second Hour: Hugh Evans" (MP3 audio). Sunday Nights. Australia: ABC News. 5 July 2009. Retrieved 14 October 2012.
  10. ^ Khadem, Nassim (2 July 2003). "A man with his mind on the world". The Age. Australia. Retrieved 14 October 2012.
  11. ^ "Hugh Evans". National Australia Day Council. Archived from the original on 6 August 2020. Retrieved 7 February 2022.
  12. ^ Crabb, Annabel (26 January 2004). "Driven by poverty, powered by youth". The Age. Australia. Retrieved 14 October 2012.
  13. ^ "Young Australian of Year". The Sydney Morning Herald. AAP. 26 January 2004. Retrieved 14 October 2012.
  14. ^ Wade, Matt (26 January 2004). "We must all fight for justice, says young winner". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 14 October 2012.
  15. ^ "CEO of Global Poverty Project to Speak at University's 127th Commencement". Utah State Today. 6 March 2014. Retrieved 19 June 2023.
  16. ^
  17. ^ "Global Poverty Project's Hugh Evans to be Honored at Billboard Touring Awards". Billboard. 11 November 2015. Retrieved 19 June 2023.
  18. ^ Handley, Lucy (16 October 2017). "Hugh Evans: Being a global citizen". CNBC. Retrieved 19 June 2023.
  19. ^ Kreps, Daniel (13 August 2018). "Childish Gambino, Issa Rae Lead Rihanna's Fourth Annual Diamond Ball". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 19 June 2023.
  20. ^ "Hugh Evans". Points of Light. Retrieved 19 June 2023.
  21. ^ Light, Points of. "Points of Light Announces Third Annual Awards Celebration Will Recognize Hugh Evans, Francine A. LeFrak and Bryan Stevenson and Honor President George H.W. Bush's Legacy of Civic Engagement". Retrieved 19 June 2023.

External links[edit]

Preceded by Young Australian of the Year
Succeeded by
Preceded by Young Victorian of the Year
Succeeded by