Meet the Team

We are Francesca, Taru, Franca, Luisito, Shalese, Lena, Graciela and Jordan, and we make up the GMC. In Autumn 2022, inspired by the success of the 70th Anniversary celebration team (ACT), YFU Global Office kicked off the process of gathering volunteers interested in media to form a global media team. This team is now in full force, steaming ahead with multiple campaign ideas and looking for YOUR story to share in YFU’s social media!

Our mission is trifold:

1. Promote YFU's educational and professional impact

2. Engage with the Global YFU network

3. Promote YFU’s role and impact in the civil society

Seven YFU volunteers from around the globe make up the Global Media Committee

Francesca D'Agostino

My name is Francesca and I joined the YFU global office as the Communications and Advocacy Assistant in 2023. My tasks include supporting YFU’s internal and external communication, support advocacy and fundraising activities and support the implementation of the Youth Empowerment Seminar (YES). I have been an exchange student in Australia. I value working at YFU because I believe that intercultural learning leads to the development of a set of attitudes and skills that help young people to understand themselves and others to be able to act for social transformation. I am really excited to be part of the GMC and I believe in spreading the YFU Spirit as much as possible!

Taru Granholm

Hi! I'm Taru from Finland. My path in YFU started back in 2014 when I went on exchange to Germany, after which I have volunteered in YFU Finland and last year completed an ESC internship at YFU Global Office in Brussels. My internship was all about communications and advocacy, and one of the most exciting things during that year was gathering together this amazing Media Committee team and working together on creating content for the whole YFU community! I hope that through the important work of this committee we get to elevate the YFU Spirit and engage with the whole community, and give everyone a chance to share their YFU stories!

Dagne Bagdonaviciute

Hello everyone! My name is Dagne, and I originally hail from Lithuania. However, for the past three years, I've been calling the Netherlands home, and currently, I'm backpacking around South America. My journey toward exploring different cultures began in 2017 when I embarked on an exchange program to Denmark. The experience opened my eyes to a world of opportunities, inspiring me to actively engage in volunteer work upon my return. Back in Lithuania, I became an active volunteer for YFU Lithuania and YFU YES. These experiences fueled my passion for psychology, leading me to spend the last three years studying the subject with a focus on cultural psychology, intergroup relationships, and discrimination. I firmly believe that participating in an exchange at the age of 17 is an immensely valuable experience, despite its inevitable challenges. It offers a unique opportunity to explore a new country, gain deeper insights into oneself, and foster cultural awareness. This conviction led me to see the broader impact of exchange experiences, not only in personal development but also in combating prejudice, discrimination, and promoting cultural understanding. Motivated by this belief, I joined GMC with the goal of spreading the word about YFU and its mission to make the world a more tolerant place. I am enthusiastic about contributing to the cause and sharing the transformative power of exchange experiences.

Salomé (Sam) Mantout

My name is Sam. I am from France but I currently live in the Netherlands where I do my Erasmus+ exchange for the last year of my bachelor degree. I went on exchange twice with YFU: I did a summer program in Australia in 2016 and then a year in Argentina in 2018/2019. I've been a volunteer since 2016 and had the chance to help in so many ways, both nationaly and internationaly. I even did an internship in the office of YFU Poland during the summer of 2022. I am very happy to be part of the GMC and hope to continue sharing people stories

Wang Yiyi (Sarah)

Hi! I'm 王奕伊(Wang Yiyi), you can call me Sarah. I am from a lovely coastal city in China. I was an exchange student to the US (2022/2023). The exchange was such a fulfilling experience that it continues to bless me even after I came back from the US -- one of the blessings is the opportunity to join GMC! I slowly realize my passion for cultural communication and cannot wait to work with this vibrant team who shares the same enthusiasm. I am very excited to hear about and spread distinctive stories from exchange students around the world and hopefully touch more hearts with our values like openness, creativity, curiosity, and love!

Cecilia Vilanova

Hello YFU family! My name is Cecilia Vanesa Vilanova or Ceci, as everyone calls me. I am from San Juan, Argentina. I am 21 years old, I study architecture and I love art in all its forms. I found out about YFU because I saw on social media that all my friends were hanging out in a camp, when I asked them why they had not invited me, they told me that it was a YFU volunteer camp and that if I wanted I could also joined them. Since January 10th, 2020 I have not left YFU, and today I fall more in love with this great family every day. I see YFU as the place where I feel good no matter what, and at the same time I do good for the world and the YFU family, so today I do everything in my power so that YFU reaches more people like it reached me.

Contact us:


Feel like sharing some of your YFU stories? See what social media campaigns are going on and what the Committee is gathering material for!