5 Urban Village Projects Transforming Communities

Reposted from Shareable.net

The traditional ancestral practice known in the West as “barn raising” is present in village societies on every continent and has its roots in our tribal past. An adapted form of barn raising has recently seen a resurgence in the “urban village,” with grassroots community organizations transforming physical and social landscapes in cities. They do so by adding value to the community, creating bonds of trust and comradeship, and linking neighbors together. There are hundreds of urban village projects around the world. Below are five worth watching.

1. City Repair and the Village-Building Convergence

City Repair is a Portland-based non-profit organization focused on placemaking. According to their website, they facilitate artistic and ecologically-oriented placemaking through projects that honor the interconnection of human communities and the natural world.

The organization’s centerpiece is the Village-Building Convergence, an annual modern-day urban barn raising event. This event takes places at more than 50 sites simultaneously across Portland, where neighborhoods come together to create new spaces.

The three primary activities are natural building, permaculture, and intersection repair, which often involves painting street intersections with murals. The presence of these murals causes traffic to slow down and has been directly correlated with a decrease in traffic accidents. Physical outcomes of City Repair efforts include beautified intersections, community gardens, naturally built structures such as benches, and an expansion of the commons.

Spin-offs of the convergence have emerged in Santa Barbara and Sebastopol, as well as PLACE for Sustainable Living in Oakland. City Repair created a manual for how to organize a Village Building Convergence and the event has the potential to be replicated globally. City Repair has also achieved success in shifting Portland city policy to give citizens more control over public space.

Share-It Square in Portland. Photo: Happy Travels Blog

City Repair brings people together to reimagine the places they live and to re-create the commons. The organization started its work by reclaiming these spaces through direct action, such as their iconic Share It Square project, where neighbors came together and decided, despite the Portland city government, that their intersection would be improved by a central mural, a tiny library box, a self-serving solar-powered tea station, a community message board, and a children’s play space. They created these features themselves. Now, the City of Portland recognizes the great benefit these common spaces provide and has permitted the process of Intersection Repair.

Through the activities of City Repair, neighbors are skill-sharing and creating new relationships. As the commons are reclaimed and beautified, more public gathering spaces are made available for Portland’s citizens to congregate. Portland’s neighborhoods are forming closer bonds, and fences are coming down to make way for urban wildlife corridors.

2. Permaculture Action Network

Photo: Zac Fabian

The Permaculture Action Network emerged from the Permaculture Action Tour, a collaboration between permaculture designers, community organizers, and electronic music producer David Sugalski (“The Polish Ambassador”). The goal of the tour was “to inspire and empower people with the tools and know-how of co-creating a sustainable and regenerative world.”

The Permaculture Action Network developed a methodology for “Permaculture Action Days,” one-day events designed to co-create a more regenerative world through communities taking action. These events have the feeling of a blitz or flash mob. Permaculture Action Network partners with local community organizations to identify appropriate project sites, mobilize local human and material resources, and facilitate the events. The organization has facilitated 50 successful Permaculture Action Days in more than 40 cities around the United States, mobilizing up to 400 people at a time to build urban farms, natural buildings, and other ecological systems.

Participants come away empowered with new skills and confidence, new relationships with like-minded neighbors, and a community garden, food forest, or greenhouse in their neighborhood.

Photo: Zac Fabian

Permaculture Action teams up with festivals to bring attendees to a Permaculture Action Day before entering the grounds. At these events, festival-goers help with projects. One example is a cob, outdoor classroom made of all natural materials at an elementary school near the Lightning in a Bottle music festival in Southern California.

They also host educational workshop spaces, known as Permaculture Action Hubs, within events. These hubs offer courses in how to design, implement, and take action. They focus on ecologically regenerative design and techniques, community organizing and social change methodology.

3. Landless Workers’ Movement (MST) – Brazil

Art representing the MST Movement

The Landless Workers’ Movement (Movimento dos Trabalhadores sen Terra), or MST, is a Brazilian workers’ rights movement dedicated to agrarian reform and social justice. It has 1.5 million members across Brazil.

The MST achieves its mission through three approaches:

  1. Directly: Reclaiming commons by cooperatively organizing, occupying, and utilizing abandoned or unused land.
  2. Legally: Legal reform of land laws
  3. Education: Raising awareness about wealth inequality, racism, sexism, media monopoly, and other social issues. MST provides literacy education to its members, has its own university, and trains primary school teachers across Brazil in partnership with UN agencies and the Catholic Church. MST partnered with the Venezuelan government to create the Latin American School of Agroecology.

The MST is a grandfather in the movement, founded officially in 1984, with ties to Catholic Church organizations and with its roots in the liberation theology movement that emerged across Latin America in the 1950s.

4. NuMundo

NuMundo uses technology to build movements through a platform that catalyzes the transformation of physical spaces on a global scale. This happens by connecting sustainable living education centers with resources, information, students, and skilled practitioners. NuMundo is a network of activists, technologists, and event producers with a multifaceted approach to social action.

During their Earth Odyssey Bus tour in 2013, NuMundo (formerly Project Nuevo Mundo) took a group of skilled builders and permaculture designers across Mexico and Central America to support community projects such as an orphanage, an agroecology education center, an indigenous women’s clothing production cooperative, a community nutrition center, and a primary school.

NuMundo also hosts educational events on various aspects of village-building. Aside from on-the-ground work, NuMundo has a unique approach to movement building: the organization hosts networking spaces to link social activists, nonprofits, and community organizations to add momentum to existing projects.

5. Beacon Food Forest, Seattle

Photo: Jonathan H LeeGrist

The Beacon Food Forest is another beautiful example of an urban community mobilizing to bring the village into the city. According to the group, the goal of Beacon Food Forest is to design, plant and grow an edible urban forest garden that inspires our community to gather together, grow our own food, and rehabilitate our local ecosystem. This citizen-led initiative is building an ethnically and economically diverse community around food.

The forest is in its initial phases of implementation, and is set to include fruits and nuts from around the world, public community spaces for education and gathering, and a community garden following the ancient village tradition of the commons where community members enjoy access to small individual plots of land.

Beacon Food Forest sprang from a student project in a local permaculture design course. It has proven to be just as much a community-building endeavor as a food forest project. Beacon hosts ongoing educational workshops and community work parties, and is looking for more community involvement from Seattle residents.

Social and environmental change is being led by grassroots initiatives like these. What each of these projects has in common is that they create resilient networks of people and projects. Ultimately, they are individual movements empowering anyone who wants to get involved to do so. These movements unite people around ideas of self-sufficiency, food sovereignty, social justice and regenerative living systems to weave a strong web of support.

5 Ways Practicing Permaculture Has Changed My Life

I grew up in the windy city of Chicago with the dream of being an entrepreneur. My life was consumed with technology, socializing and working a corporate job. I didn’t realize until I left that following a stale traditional path was consuming my potential to live a life filled with meaning and enjoyment. Although city-living is full of great networking, events and movers and shakers, I now prefer to live close to the land.

Bryan Arturo harvesting a jackfruit from a permaculture farm

Since 2013, I’ve been traveling, offering my skills to grassroots movements and supporting NuMundo all over the Americas. This winter, I chose to live at a regenerative farm called East End Eden in Ojai, California. We incorporate permaculture into our lifestyle by maintaining closed loop systems such as greywater, composting toilets earthen building and integrated animal systems. I feel renewed in the short time that I’ve lived here and more connected to who I really am. Here are 5 reasons why living in this slower-paced, purpose-driven way is changing my life already:

    1. I’m unlearning impatience that I developed through spending glued to my computer in the past. Instant gratification, immediate answers and intuitive UI used to demand my everyday life. Life on the homestead is not always as easy as searching Google or browsing Facebook. The questions I ask are usually answered by “it depends”. For example, the goats don’t all like to eat the same kinds of trees as they have distinct personalities and preferences. The peppers are not irrigated the same amount each week, it depends on how much sun there is and how the plants appear. I’ve learned how to be present, observing and interacting with my surroundings and learning from the subtle differences. Instead of just marching through the nursery I can notice how the trees are liking their new locations or if the Asian pears are ripe. This shift in my behavior is allowing me to soak in knowledge and wisdom in a new way. I can easily incorporate this newfound presence into my everyday interactions and my work.
    2. My flexible schedule is expanding my potential. My agreement to live on the land in a modern room is to contribute 20 hours of my time to East End Eden. I have plenty of free time to run my own businesses and explore my interests. I appreciate my work/trade agreement because instead of resorting to a temporary part-time job to pay for rent I can develop relationships here with other change-makers. I don’t need to perform monotonous tasks with technology that even corporate full-time jobs require. Instead, I am obtaining a yield of education, empowerment and skills towards the regenerative homestead that I want to manage in the future.
    3. Authentic social relations boost my personal and interpersonal growth. My favorite part of living in community is the camaraderie that always develops when there is clear communication. At East End Eden, we have daily check-ins after breakfast to understand how each of us are feeling and how we’re planning out our day. Once a week we discuss long term goals and there is time to resolve and process any tension that built up over the week. This structure allows me to, well, ‘check myself before I wreck myself’. I get to witness others give praise, apply self-regulation & accept critical feedback. I practice not taking things personally and see everyone as whole and complete beings. These meetings are wonderful reminders to get out of my head and express what I really need or desire.
    4. Feeling integrated into an ecosystem helps me to embody the interconnectedness of all life. I am literally creating relationships with my food, water and natural systems that I interact with every day. In the past, I would toss food scraps into a trash can to be driven to a landfill which create toxic gases for the atmosphere. At East End Eden, we feed the scraps to the chickens who transform it into eggs we eat and droppings that enrich the soil. After taking a chicken’s life for the first time, I feel deep gratitude and respect for the food that I consume. By producing no waste and realizing that my outputs are inputs for other systems, I am beginning to foster closed loop systems in all aspects of my life.
    5. Experiential learning is teaching me more than traditional education ever has. By expanding the edge of my comfort zone and living at permaculture communities I accepted a lifestyle of life-long learning. I usually don’t even realize I am absorbing so much knowledge because I’m just having fun with my peers who also choose this lifestyle are encyclopedias of information. I feel whole, happy and fulfilled and the reality is that I am not living in a secret garden of Eden. There are hubs like this all over the world, perhaps even in your local community. How do the permaculture principles apply to your lifestyle?


Bryan has led retreats and workshops all over the world that led him to co-found Earth Journeys and The Sustainable Living Tour. The annual tour takes 30 change-makers to SoCal’s leading eco-education hubs on a biofuel bus. Get on the bus: earthjourneys.org/tour

 

I Took 1-Month Digital and Social Detox: Here’s What I Learned

IMG_2470Organizing, traveling, spreadsheets, marketing, crunching, late nights, eyes glued to the screen. Skype calls, workshops, agreements, networking promoting and speaking. Does this sound familiar to you? This has been my life for the past 3 years. Although my work has been deeply fulfilling and amazing it’s also been deeply exhausting. I’m working toward social and environmental justice but at a rate that is ironically unsustainable.

While I was making strides in my work, I was not fulfilling many of my personal ethics, integrities and creative and spiritual potential. I found myself falling into robotic rhythms plowing through projects, not being fully present in everyday encounters-sometimes even with my own team.

Pitching NuMundo at Startup Chile.

Pitching NuMundo at Startup Chile.

I don’t feel in integrity when I ignore a stranger (who might be new friend) because my head is down in my phone answering emails. I also don’t feel right cutting conversations short that seem menial in comparison to a deadline to meet (that I’ve set for myself).

I longed to recover what it felt like to slow momentum and actually feel like I’m making a difference in the world without trying. I wanted to reconnect with my purpose and find that presence again. I asked myself the question, “How can I be a hero for the planet if I haven’t been a hero for my own family?” “How can I show up for social and environmental injustice if I’m not showing up for every-day strangers or missing emails of gratitude from my supporters?”

How can we go on forever trying to make a difference in the world without taking significant, yummy pauses for our own vitality, integrity and ethics?

My precious 8-month old nephew Julian and I during my digital detox,

My precious 8-month old nephew Julian and I during my digital detox,

This past September, my intention was to disconnect and reconnect to myself, to take care of my health and be a fully present daughter, Aunt, niece, sister and friend. In the past, when I visited my home in Michigan, I’d have to squeeze my family in.  

I wanted to reconnect with my own voice and purpose without the influence of social-media. I knew this would be challenging but if it’s something that’ll help me grow as a person, I’m always game.

I thought,“What would happen if I stepped away from all my projects and social media to live with my mom and do a health detox for 5 ½ weeks ?”

So, I survived my “Digital Detox” and here’s why I think all change-makers need to take pauses and how it deeply benefited me:

  • Don’t be a Stranger: It’s absolutely crucial for healing the planet that we first heal our relationship with each other. That means we must value any and all human interactions as important and meaningful. Giving the gift of presence and authenticity to a total stranger could change the world. Taking a pause from work and technology frees you up to be able to gift the gift of presence to anyone who comes into your path.
  • Disconnect to Reconnect: Getting off social media and limiting technology for a significant amount of time is transformational. For those of us who are social butterflies, influencers or just sharing the latest world challenge we face, we all need to remember what it’s like to live without social media. To disconnect can reconnect us to our OWN “news feed”, our own story, our own influence, our inner-voice and even develop a stronger telepathic, empathetic, psychic connection that we already intrinsically have.
  • Be Your Family’s Hero: Although many of us may try to avoid going home because of the inherent challenging aspects (needless to elaborate on), our family needs us more than anyone. Is it more gratifying to be a hero that’s widely recognized or to know you’ve gathered all of your grand-parents stories, taught your nephew a new skill or made crafts with your mom? Our foundation, our roots, our personal ancestry can teach us a great deal about ourselves and the world – if we take the time to listen. Let’s not forget to pause and take that sincere time with our families to exchange growth and inspiration that we can take with us and feel good about in our work.
  • Deepen Humility: I have to name it. I see a lot of people in the community of permaculture, transformational festivals and other modes of healing/empowerment that thrive off of fame and use sex appeal in marketing efforts. I see changemakers hyping themselves through “cool” affiliations and making themselves into a sexy brand. Guilty! (raises hand) If the intention is fueled by ego, it will come and go. If it is fueled by genuine, human attempts to connect all sentient beings – it will last generations. We can find that balance and continue to humble ourselves by taking pauses to step out of the limelight and feel what it feels like to not be constantly admired. It helps to bring humility and perspective.
  • Save Ourselves, Then the Planet: Take a pause to actually check in with our health. Although many of us are generally healthy, how are our adrenals doing? Are we getting all the vitamins our body needs? How are our Iron levels? Are we having healthy and regular bowels? (seriously!) Or have we been ignoring minor health issues? It’s super easy to “deal” with mediocre health in our busy lives. Even if we eat healthy and even exercise, our toxic world requires us to check in with our bodies (and our doctors – preferably holistic) and give ourselves the gift of taking time for healing. If you’re young, great! Now is the perfect time to do whatever you need to do to make sure your spaceship is running 100% so we can continue being super-heros. Our inner ecology is as important as our outer-ecology.
  • Flex Imagination: In my experience, a whole and effective transformational leader makes time and space to journey into the creative realm. Even if you don’t think you’re an artist, you are indeed! We all are. Taking time to channel our inner-artist will allow us to go with the flow, become graceful, accepting and celebrate successes. Flexing our creative self through poetry, song, dance or painting allows us to free our stress, exercise our connection with spirituality and drop our egos. At the end of the day, it takes enormous amounts of creativity, collaboration and imagination to come up with solutions to planetary challeneges. The more we exercise our creativity, the more clear our creative channels will be to change the world, inspire, create, enjoy and share!
  • Learn to Be: We certainly all know how to “do” that’s for certain. Do we know how to “be”? What does it mean to ”be”? To me it means a deep contentment of the now-moment minus the aching desire to outwardly act or participate. “Doing” involves engaging in “productive” activities that our minds think will bring us success and happiness. Being, is the process of inner-fulfillment that allows us to see, feel and gain wisdom we wouldn’t be able to access because we’re too busy “doing”. By just “being” for a month, I feel I was able to access a prolonged deep healing, self-reflection, creativity and a presence I wasn’t able to feel before. In our younger years we’re so eager to fly, excel, create our identity, figure out who we are and live out our destiny. However, it’s finding the center between doing and being that allows us to access deeper levels of wisdom and spiritual messages.
  • Re-aligning Guiding Forces: Taking a pause from our work and technology gives us the time and space to evaluate, clarify and refocus the deepest forces that guides us. We’re constantly evolving and so are our core values, motivations and passions. When we give ourselves the gift of asking ourselves ”what drives me to get up in the morning these days?”, we’ll be able to check in that our actions are aligned with our guiding forces. I do a small retreat for myself at least once a year to dream my own guiding forces.

A lot of us will go and go until we burn out or until a medical issue calls our attention – at least that was the case for me. But, our bodies know best and WILL notify you when it wants you to take a pause. Personally, I always did my yoga and dance practice every day, ate healthy and participated in regular healing activities even throughout my time working. I’m here to say, I don’t think it’s enough. I think we all need and deserve a thorough pause to actually go deep and come out more rejuvenated, aware and healthy!

Co-Inspiration: Ignite Experience empowers international entrepreneurs and rural community in Elqui Valley

Valle Del Elqui, Chile’s mellow toned, mystical and tranquil gem received 13 international entrepreneurs from Startup Chile. The Ignite Experience was a weekend of exchanging knowledge, inspiring and being inspired by the community and the children of Tierra y Valle. Tierra y Valle is a cultural and sustainability education center  connecting children to nature and fosters leadership, creation of culture, development of the family, neighborhood and society.

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Weaving our superpowers into a collective web! Photo by Evoluzion

My partner Bryan (Untos) and I (Dream Activation), NuMundo and Evoluzion co-designed the very first “Ignite Experience” with the purpose of hosting engaging activities to cross-empower children, community and international entrepreneurs alike.

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Bryan and I sharing the call and response that we would use throughout to refocus attention. Photo by Lukas Sommer of Good Things Everywhere

Day 1 – The Intergenecultural Exchange

After a lengthy 10 hour journey to Valle del Elqui, we were all exhausted but ignited with excitement for the action. We filled almost every room in a hostel that overlooked gorgeous mountains and had regenerative systems in place like grey water purification and composting.

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The entrepreneurs just arrived to Elqui Valley and are learning the background and history about the land. Photo by Lukas Sommer of Good Things Everywhere

After a few hours of settling in, resting and practicing for the cultural exchange, we were off to meet the children and give presentations to inspire the kids. For many of them, it was the very first time ever getting to know leaders from India, Philippines or Germany. Laughs, knowledge, wide-eyes and new cultural perspectives were shared.

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Vishwanath, an entrepreneur from India is shares culture with the kids! Photo by Evoluzion

We all skipped over to Tierra y Valle to see that the children were all preparing Churrascas, a traditional Chilean bread as a gift to us! The kids taught some of us how to make Churrascas while other entrepreneurs were receiving a lesson about worm composting from one of the boys. For some of the entrepreneurs it was the first time learning about transforming food waste into soil! Our team scattered about the land taking in their innocent wisdom as we toured their personal little garden plots each of them were tending. The day closed in awe as we said our “hasta mañana’s” to the kids.

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Nessim, an entrepreneur from France learns how to make Churrascas from the kids. Photo by Lukas Sommer of Good Things Everywhere

Day 2 – The Superheros

Fresh and ready for our biggest day of the weekend to engage with the kids and community, we gathered to discuss our roles as “superheroes”. Programmed and facilitated both Bryan and myself, we led a 3 hour leadership activation activity that interweaved the entrepreneurs (superheroes). The entrepreneurs represented a team of changemakers who were there to invite the children to “join us”. We helped the kids identify their superpowers, led them on a meditation to vision their community in the future and asked them to draw what they imagined. The entrepreneurs worked one-on-one with the children helping them to come up with ideas for their passions and motivations.

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The children are drawing and entrepreneurs drawing their vision of Pisco Elqui and themselves in 5 years. Photo by Lukas Sommer of Good Things Everywhere

Creativity, imagination and sharing were ignited for everyone. We then rolled into a yarn game to interweave a network of each of our superpowers with the kids as a representation  of our gifts, and the purpose was to instill that we are all part of a unique ecosystem that depends on each other. Once everyone shared, we asked the kids to shout out challenges they identified in their community. The answers of these 6-13 year olds were brilliant. They identified, drought, use of pesticides, pollution, garbage and fighting to be the most prominent.

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Merle, sharing her list of the things that she’s passionate about. Photo by Lukas Sommer of Good Things Everywhere

We split into teams based on each of the identified challenges mixed with parents, entrepreneurs and children. To our amazement, we witnessed incredible solutions crafted by the children. During the next 30 minutes, the entrepreneurs guided the kids combining their superpowers and visions for the future to work together on coming up with solutions for these challenges. The entrepreneurs were essential role models who kept everyone having fun while discussing important topics.

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Children drawing a picture of their future vision for the community and themselves. Photo by Lukas Sommer of Good Things Everywhere

Finally, each group presented the children’s incredibly insightful solutions. The garbage team, had the idea of building a bottle bricking and recycling center out of bottle-bricks and adobe complete with a campaign to get their town’s people to bring the trash to the site. A 10 year old girl came up with the idea of using plastic bottles cut in half for drip irrigation (an ancient aztec technique). The drought group came up with recycling water using a greywater system and having a tree planting party on the hills to retain water. With the support of Tierra y Valle and Evoluzion, the kids plan on working on these ideas long-term.

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Angela, Bryan and Matias helping the girls to present their ideas of projects they want to do in their community. Photo by Lukas Sommer of Good Things Everywhere

The second half of the day, the entrepreneurs worked in Tierra y Valle helping to make improvements to the site and having a mentorship session with two Tierra y Valle, local eco-hostels, and Arropa.

Day 3 – The Fulfillment

The final day of the Ignite Experience was spent biking down a wavy valley highway to the oldest Pisco distillery in Chile that’s still producing with traditional, organic methods where we sampled their sweet wine and orange trees. We closed out the weekend with a circle under willow trees by a river to share our gratitude, love and feedback about everything. It was apparent that this was a heart-opening and bonding experience for the entrepreneurs after hearing all of their reflections.

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Group photo of most of the entrepreneurs who attended the Ignite Experience! Photo by Lukas Sommer of Good Things Everywhere

The Ignite Experience was truly a cross-beneficial, rewarding and innovative transformational tourism adventure into the heart of culture, youth and wisdom exchange.  Although this was the first and has room for improvement, this has ignited a new flame within my heart to continue this type of work. It was a beautiful reminder that simple actions like these can have infinite ripple effects on the lives of children.

Co-written by Bryan Arturo

10 Ways to Empower Youth Leadership

According to the Knight Foundation, statistics also show a gap. ‘Often that energy, that desire to contribute or lead, is going unsupported and untapped, they said.’ Teens and young adults don’t always see a place for their voice and their work.’ They feel unwelcome, perhaps a result of negative messages about youth coming from adults and even the media.

We are running out of time to solve the climate crisis. Every day it seems more people are calling out for climate action, but still, every time global leaders meet they fail to reach binding agreements to curb greenhouse gasses.

Youth around the world feel fear and despair when they think about what climate change could mean for their future. While this generation has the most at stake when it comes to preventing climate chaos, many young people don’t know where to start in addressing this huge issue. Many youth are looking for ways to be a part of the solution, but need the training and support to take the next step.

In light of the issue we are facing, here is a list of 10 ways that you can start empowering your children to be positive youth leaders NOW:

1. Give the youth tools to collaborate and problem solve, brainstorm and reflect.

Providing youth with the information and resources necessary for analyzing issues that affect their lives and environments will help them become strong strategizers on ways to act as change agents in their communities.

2. Encourage them to use their passions for good.

Guiding youth to use what their passions and creativity to share positive messages or bring attention to issues they care about will allow them to find purpose within their passion and use the power of their joy to share important messages.

3. Guide them to believe that their voice matters without judging or criticizing their ideas.

Empowering youth to understand that their voice makes a huge difference in this world and that all ideas are worth exploring will only give them more motivation and fuel to continue strengthening their own power for change.

4. Guide them to understand that people will not always want to listen, just because we would like them to but to not take it personally.

Helping youth to understand that not everyone is going to respond the way you hope they would and that some people may not be ready to hear what you want to share will support their confidence. It’s important to let youth know that when someone doesn’t listen to them, allow that to only make them stronger.

5. Help them learn that sometimes even the most fabulous idea may need a bit more logistical planning.

Guiding youth to help them understand that all visions and ideas take time to make sure they are realistic and well thought through. Help them to know that there are different stages to a project and the first stage is having an idea but there are many stages after that. This will help them understand the full process and not get stuck on one idea.

6. Help youth develop habits, that in the end, they can sustain without ‘suggestions’ or prodding.

Good habits produce sustainable leaders. Youth that have good habits for their own well-being and constant personal progression that they enjoy will help them become strong leaders on their own.

7. Give youth a chance for them to fail but help them to learn to succeed.

Let youth know that failing is not a bad thing to happen, it’s actually important to find out what went wrong so they can improve and make it better the next time they try. Often the way to success is through failure.

8. Employ storytelling of successful youth leadership to counteract negative messages about young people.

Encourage youth to speak about to their triumphs often, to share their victories across all media platforms to reinforce the positive change that has occurred. This will empower more positive action to continue and give youth more foundation and support to work from.

9. Invite the youth to launch a project or idea and support their progress.

Support youth in implementing their project once they feel they have come up with a good strategy and support them along the way. Allowing them to carry out their vision with the encouragement and coaching support will be an empowering experience and let them feel supported in their process.

10. Help them become involved with a youth sustainability program.

Rising Youth for a Sustainable Earth (RYSE) is a collective of youth-led groups that envision a greener and healthier earth through empowerment through education and re-creating our relationships with nature. It’s time for each of us to support the leadership of generations to come who will be most affected by the global crisis of climate change.