Youth + Social Change through Youth-Led Facilitation

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Youth as Facilitators. Knowledge comes from study, experience, and reflection. Engaging young people as teachers helps reinforce their commitment to learning and the subject they are teaching; it also engages both young and older learners in exciting ways.

You cannot teach anyone anything, you can only help them find it within their self. ― Galileo Galilei

Ways Youth + Social Change Happens through Facilitation

Youth-Driven Programming — From determining needs, to planning, facilitating and evaluating programs, policies and activities, youth can be tremendous program planners. Facilitating their peers, younger people and adults can be exciting and powerful, and provide excellent reasons for further social change beyond any specific program to affecting people throughout entire communities.

Youth Led Therapy — Youth-led therapy can be an engaging and effective way to prevent, intervene and empower young people. With training on how to be there for one another, youth can support each other in overcoming the challenges they face in their lives.

Youth as Workshop Leaders — Facilitating interactive, hands-on knowledge-creation activities can be one of the most meaningful ways to involve youth. These opportunities can provide adults with new insights and knowledge, help young people gain the knowledge and reflect on their experiences, and challenge organizations to overcome laziness, incapabilities and lost potential.

Tools for Youth + Social Change through Facilitation

Training — Young people, just like adults, can benefit greatly from skill-development and knowledge-sharing focused on facilitation skills. Topics like group management, multiple intelligences, teaching styles, working with challenging issues and other related issues can help youth as facilitators move beyond expectations to create awesome learning opportunities for everyone involved.

Opportunities — Creating structured opportunities for youth as facilitators can provide essential learning, reflection and growth in action. Whether facilitating for a specific program or organization, at school, in a conference, during a retreat or otherwise, young people can establish, hone and empower their own abilities to transform society through learning and facilitating.

Internships — Partnering with established facilitators can help youth build their skills and knowledge, whether working with youth or adult facilitators. Young people can ask questions, share thoughts, critique facilitation and otherwise help their mentor expand their abilities while building on their own.


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Other tools are out there, too – share your thoughts in the comments below! For more information about how Freechild Institute can support youth + social change in facilitation in your community or organization, contact us.

The impact of our overall work has never been formally assessed. However, here I m going to compile some measures of impact that I find interesting. The mission of The Freechild Project is to advocate, inform, and celebrate social change led by and with young people around the world, especially those who have been historically denied the right to participate. We do this through programs, facilitating training and workshops, and through our website. We provide training, technical assistance and tools to community groups, nonprofit orgs, schools, and government agencies focused on the most diverse meaning of youth engagement.

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