About 40 per cent of the world’s workforce are women, however according to data from the Inter-Parliamentary Union, only 24 percent of all national parliamentarians were female as of 1 December 2018. Because Zonta International believes that young women are the key to women’s advancement in the field of public service, it offers the Young Women in Public Affairs (YWPA) Award, which recognizes young women, ages 16-19, for demonstrating leadership skills and commitment to public service and civic causes, and encourages them to continue their participation in public and political life.

Established in 1990 by Past International President The Hon. Leneen Forde AC, Zonta has given 888 awards (includes international awards), totalling US$924,750, to 756 young women representing 56 countries.

The program operates at the Zonta club, district/region and international levels. Zonta clubs provide awards for club recipients, and district/region and international awards are funded by the Zonta International Foundation. District recipients receive US$1,500, and 10 international recipients are selected from the district/region recipients to receive awards of US$4,000 each.

For full details, eligibility and closing dates for application, see:


Young women wishing to apply for this award through the Zonta Club of Brisbane should contact the Club zontabrisbane@gmail.com to obtain information on club closing dates.