Workshops

Freechild provides workshops across the United States, Canada and internationally in four main areas:

VOICE—Freechild teaches that youth voice is any expression of any young person anywhere, at any time for any reason. We facilitate workshops that help people learn how, when, where and why youth voice matters!

ENGAGEMENT—Choosing the same thing over and over allows young people to establish their purpose, power and possibilities in life. Freechild’s learning activities show that when those choices are intentional, positive and motivated, they can connect youth with what matters for their entire lifetimes.

INVOLVEMENT—Fostering systemic opportunities for youth in activities, programs, organizations and communities requires planning, learning, action and reflection. Participants in Freechild workshops find out how youth engagement happens and where it matters most.

ACTION—You wouldn’t give the keys to a 16-year-old and tell them to figure out how to drive, but you would turn them loose with a budget and no learning about planning, facilitating and improving youth action? Freechild facilitates learning about youth action in positive, powerful ways! This includes our new Social Action Recharge for Youth & Adults workshop (see bottom!)

GET TRAINED: Voice, Involvement, Engagement, Action by Freechild Institute, https://freechild.org

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Social Action Recharge Workshop for Youth & Adults by Freechild Institute for Youth Engagement
Social Action Recharge Workshop for Youth & Adults by Freechild Institute for Youth Engagement
Freechild training for youth and adults
Freechild Institute training for youth and adults with topics and audiences

Youth Involvement Campaign

Sustained, meaningful involvement is a key to engaging youth with purpose, power and belonging.

The Freechild Institute is building an international movement to build, increase, sustain and expand youth involvement throughout the activities, programs, organizations and communities they belong within.

We are doing this with a campaign focused on education, including social media, print materials, training and evaluation. Our international training team led by Adam Fletcher will travel to your community or conference to help build this movement.

Contact us today for more information.

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Citywide Youth Engagement Strategies

This is a map of any city youth engagement strategy by Adam Fletcher for Freechild Institute

Transforming a city—one that is likely complex and has been in place for centuries—into a place that engages all youth everywhere all the time can be difficult. Questions commonly raised by youth and adults looking to foster citywide youth engagement strategies include:

  • Who should be engaged?
  • What should our youth engagement strategy look like?
  • How will we know if it works?  

To help address these and many other questions, the Freechild Institute has written this article to guide the development of citywide youth engagement strategies. We have worked with several communities to develop these strategies. The approaches we develop strive to build youth engagement systems that help communities design, implement, and sustain strategies to youth engagement that are data-driven and focused on your community’s unique strengths and needs, making your systems much more likely to succeed.


Step 1: Plan an Assessment

Plan a systemwide assessment. Identify the extent to which current operations align with or deviate from the features of an effective citywide youth engagement strategy. Specifically, it can offer guidance on:

  • Reviewing the scope of youth engagement;
  • Reviewing the roles and responsibilities, and;
  • Affirming the timeline for youth engagement throughout your community.

Step 2: Review Citywide Policies

Review the policies that affect what’s happening in your city. Examine the rules and policies that govern youth engagement throughout your community to figure out what is and is not needed at each point throughout your community.


Step 3: Collect Quantitative Data

Collect quantitative data on how and who is using the system. Explore how to gather data on the volume and characteristics of youth engagement throughout your community, allowing you to identify those areas that are working well and those that are broken and in need of repair. Specifically, collect high-level, aggregate statistics on the following data elements:

  • Types of engagement
  • Demographics of young people, communities and stakeholders
  • Purposes, intentions and visions
  • Champions
  • Service needs and other systemic opportunities
  • Youth engagement times and costs
  • Locations for youth engagement, length of engagement, and costs
  • Outcomes

Step 4: Collect Qualitative Data

Collect qualitative data on how local stakeholders perceive youth engagement. Gather the impressions, opinions, and general insight of youth engagement system stakeholders. This can help order to form a more holistic narrative of the community. Specifically, gather this information from the following groups:

  • Young people
  • Stakeholders who work in the youth engagement system
  • Family members

Step 5: Collect Information

Collect information on local service capacity. Determine the existing local capacity for facilitating youth engagement with young people, parents, nonprofits, schools, government agencies, and others. Specifically:

  • Develop a list of youth engagement champions, providers and facilitators
  • Survey champions, providers and facilitators

Step 6: Analyze the Data

Analyze the quantitative and qualitative data together, allowing each to inform the other. Actively and intentionally use the policies and quantitative, qualitative and service capacity information you have collected to inform and drive your work. Specifically:

  • Uncover the narrative of your youth engagement system
  • Present and reflect upon key findings as a citywide youth engagement strategy

Step 7: Create a Citywide Strategy

Create a citywide youth engagement strategy. Using the data you’ve collected, create a citywide youth engagement strategy. As you develop your tool, consider each of the data points you’ve collected and your analysis of the data. Your strategy should be applicable throughout your entire city and reflect your goals. Essential elements of the strategy should reflect:

Your citywide youth engagement strategy should also unveil a clear action plan for implementing youth engagement for all youth, everywhere, all the time.

After presenting your citywide youth engagement strategy, contact the Freechild Institute to share your plan! If you’re looking for examples of what citywide youth engagement strategies do, check out our features on Portland, Oregon and Hampton, Virginia.

When you’ve implemented your strategy, remember to reflect and celebrate throughout the process, and stay committed to social justice while you’re at it!


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This is a map of any city youth engagement strategy by Adam Fletcher for Freechild Institute
A MAP OF ANY CITY This is a map of any city showing citywide youth engagement. It includes the following places: 1. Youth in city hall 2. Youth on school boards 3. Youth engagement at home 4. Youth owned businesses 5. Youth engagement in the outdoors 6. Youth led nonprofits 7. Youth infused community planning 8. Youth centric public transporation 9. Schools focused on engagement instead of achievement 10. Obvious youth made art, writing, theater, music and other creations 11. Training and educational opportunities for everyone focused on youth engagement knowledge, skills, ideas and actions 12. Community-wide investment in youth engagement 13. Youth action research 14. Youth led training and technical assistance on youth engagement 15. Youth led spaces, activities, programs and organizations 16. New technology supporting youth engagement 17. Places where youth and adults interact as equals 18. Training for adults on all aspects of youth engagement 19. Educational opportunities to learn how to change the world 20. Safe places for youth to be, do, create, dream 21. Clear rules, laws, policies and procedures to build youth engagement 22. Sustained funding to build, support and grow youth engagement 23. “Edge spaces” for youth engagement that make some adults uncomfortable 24. Transitional activities to support young adults becoming independent 25. Specific activities to engage young people together for racial, cultural, social, educational, economic and other kinds of harmony and peace 26. Places to engage LGBTTQQ youth 27. Places to engage youth in racial, cultural and ethnic identities 28. People who think beyond youth engagement and towards solidairty 29. Opportunities to engage kids before they become youth 30. Youth voting rights * A single, unified, wholistic strategy for the entire city SUPPORTS * Personnel dedicated to youth engagement * Practices building youth engagement * Policies supporting youth engagement * Procedures that sustain youth engagement (c) 2018 Adam Fletcher for Freechild Institute for Youth Engagement

Youth Political Action Institute

The Freechild Project is excited to announce the availability of our Youth Political Action Institute. Designed to inspire, inform and empower young people ages 12 to 18, Freechild facilitates online workshops with powerful, positive and practical lessons that will change the lives of youth in your community!

Our institute covers five areas:

  • Motivation — Why is it absolutely essential for YOU to take action?!?
  • Knowledge-Sharing — You know what you know; now share it with others!
  • Skill-Building — Developing the POWER to create change is critical.
  • Action Planning — Learning how to DO SOMETHING takes commitment!
  • Reflection — Its not enough to just do stuff. You should learn about action with us.

Call The Freechild Project today to discuss costs, availability and more at (360) 489-9680 or email info@freechild.org.

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