Kizanne James

2017 Winner

Position: Medical Doctor/World Contraception Day Ambassador 2016/Women Deliver Young Leader/Chevening Scholar
Organization: Caribbean Youth for Philanthropy/Women Deliver
Current Location: United Kingdom

Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery from University of the West Indies, Mona Campus

Additional Degrees and Certifications:
• MSc. Leadership and Management in Health and Social Care (2017)
• Courses: Self Leadership, Leading Others, Strategic Management, Coaching, Governance in Action
• Dissertation Topic- Barriers to Women’s Advancement into Health Leadership Positions
• Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS)
• BSc. Medical Sciences
• BSc. Biology Emphasis in Zoology
Additional Courses/Certification:
• Speech Writing and Public Speaking ( University of the West Indies Open Campus)
• Project Design and Management, Health and Rights, Advocacy, Grant Seeking and Proposal Development, Communication (Women Deliver Online Courses)

Awards Received:

Award for Excellence in Leadership, Award for Outstanding Leadership, Premier Award for Excellence in Leadership, President’s Award
Awarding Organization:
University of the West Indies
Date Awarded:
April 23, 2015

Women in Science Engineering and Technology Gold Award (for contribution to building the profile of women in science)
Awarding Organization:
University of Southampton
Date Awarded:
March 22, 2017

Most Outstanding Young Alumni Award
Awarding Organization:
University of the Southern Caribbean
Date Awarded:
November 10, 2015

Kizanne James is a multi-award-winning leader, Chevening Scholar, women’s rights and health activist and physician with a passion for global health. She has volunteered with numerous third-sector organizations within the Caribbean and the United Kingdom, with a special focus on youth empowerment, women’s development and health. Her work in youth leadership spanning over 15 years has been recognized by the University of the Southern Caribbean, who named her the Most Outstanding Young Alumni 2015, and the University of the West Indies, from which she received the Primer Award for Leadership, Award for Outstanding Leadership, and Excellence in Leadership consecutively. From the University of Southampton, she received the Women in Science, Engineering and Technology Award 2017 for her contribution to the development of women. Additionally, Kizanne has been selected from out of thousands of young leaders from 104 countries to be a fellow in the Women Deliver Young Leaders Program, rated 4th in the world. She is also one of 10 World Contraception Day Ambassadors and advocates for the Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights of Women and Girls within Latin America and the Caribbean. She is the founder of Access Sex Health, a global movement and social enterprise funded by Women Deliver and the University of Southampton to improve access to sexual health resources within developing countries. Her work has been mentioned within numerous local, regional and international magazines and newspapers including FP2020, PSI Impact and Marie Claire UK.

“Kizanne is a multi-award-winning medical doctor with a 15-yr leadership history including advocating for Sexual and Reproductive Health & Rights of Women and Girls in the Caribbean. In 2016 she created a mobile app to promote SRHR in the region.

– Teocah Dove, Youth Development Consultant

Describe your contributions to and achievements in family planning.

I have promoted Family Planning ever since medical school. Upon my completion, I voluntarily gave sexual health talks, at local institutions including prisons. A challenging thing to do in a culture where discussing sex, especially with unmarried young people is still taboo. In 2016, I was selected to become a World Contraception Day Ambassador. Understanding the needs in my culture and the barriers to young people learning about family planning; I developed a phone application that contained information about the different types of contraception and where they can be accessed free of cost in Trinidad and Tobago. I also built a website and interviewed over 72 persons from different parts of Trinidad and Tobago, to find out their opinions on contraception.

What sparked your passion for family planning?

My passion for family planning originated from personal experience and the experiences of friends, family members and patients. Some of them unfortunately, due to a lack of access to accurate FP information, ended up in painful situations. Alternatively, I have seen FP create opportunities for young people. I believe that efficient FP and sexual health is fundamental to human development, as it affects every aspect of human life including social, financial and emotional well-being.

Give one or two examples of how you display leadership in your family planning work.:

As World Contraception Day Ambassador, I managed a team of volunteers and a budget of $5000 USD to create a project that would be sustainable, with the greatest impact. My project had approximately 700 direct and 7401 indirect beneficiaries, media coverage and the development of mediums that could continually provide local information, a phone application, and a website. Young people in my country using the app, now have access to accurate information that they can relate to.

If you are named a winner of 120 under 40, how will you use this new platform and the $1000 grant to advance your work?

Winning 120 under 40 would make a great impact on our efforts to make Family Planning accessible to everyone in Trinidad and Tobago. I will use this grant to launch our phone application hopefully reaching thousands of users, ensuring young people have correct information, and access to contraception using their cell phones free of cost. This is especially important in our culture where sexual health discussions are still taboo.

Video Introduction

Photos of the nominee in the field/at work