Hailing from Mexico, 29-year-old Tere Gonzalez Garcia is the president of Liter of Light Mexico, part of a global movement to re-purpose plastic soda bottles to create sustainable light sources. She is a strong advocate for ecological and low-cost lighting solutions for underprivileged communities around the world.

“Without light, your opportunities are diminished,” a conviction that led 29-year-old Tere to start Liter of Light Mexico in 2013 as a joint venture with Fundacion Qohelet, the non-profit organization to prevent violence and addiction that she co-founded at the age of 16. As part of a global open-source movement, Liter of Light Mexico provides affordable and sustainable solar light using recycled bottles to illuminate homes, businesses and streets. What started out as a small project in Mexico, eventually grew into a full non-profit organization, which Tere still manages today as president and has helped incubate Liter of Light in other countries like India, Spain, Honduras and Guatemala, among others. “We work directly with minorities and marginalized groups, including gypsy and indigenous communities, people living in slums, victims of drug cartels and migrants,” says Tere. In addition to her role as president of Liter of Light Mexico, Tere works at the World Bank Group supporting the communications efforts to advance gender equality globally. She previously worked at the Organization of American States promoting entrepreneurship, social and economic development among young people from Latin America and the Caribbean and was engaged with initiatives like MTV Agentes de Cambio for Latin America to engage young people in social activism. “I am committed to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals for all people while leaving no one behind.”

Read Tere's blog Youth: Drivers of the Present, Owners of the Future