In an ideal world we would all be active citizens in our communities .
How do we set young people up to be active and resilient citizens in their communities?
This is a challenge put to the Action4Agriculture team last year, initially by the Vincent Fairfax Family Foundation (VFFF) and also by the Office for Regional Youth.
VFFF commissioned Environmental Leadership Australia and Foundation for Young Australians to understand the issues for young people and make recommendations on how they can best be supported. See research outcomes here
The Office for Regional Youth did similar
Both organisations have youth advisory bodies and Action4Agriculture has youth representatives on both.
Action4Agriculture has been working with young people in primary, secondary and tertiary education for close to 20 years. We also have extensive insights into this demographic.
Building on our knowledge and insights plus that of our funding partners the Empowering Young Environmental Champions (YEC) program was born. We are very grateful to insights of Professor Felicity Blackstock and Tanya Jackson Vaughan in developing the model
The YEC are identified young people completing their Australian primary, secondary and tertiary education, who are supported to act on environmental and social issues important to them, their schools and their communities. Through the YEC project, these young people and their communities are connected with the best minds and ideas in government, education, industry, not for profits and the research sector to sustainably translate complex challenges into concrete problems and feel empowered to solve real world issues at a local, state or national level.
This bespoke program supports young Australians to be agents of change creating a movement to embed sustainability thinking and actions in our way of life.
The program is open to young people in Stage 3 to Stage 5 in primary and secondary schools and TAFE/Uni students in the following regions in 2023.
You can see how it works here
What’s involved here
Support for teachers and students here
Hierarchy of Intended Outcomes here
What I have learnt is success relies on bringing the right people to the table. I so wish everyone, everywhere had the mindset of the Brotherhood of St Laurence and fostered the communities of practice model
We believe change can only happen when people work together, which is why partnerships with the broader community and organisations nationally are a cornerstone of BSL. Source