Many of today’s youth are committed to making changes in the social service sector, and will be moving into leadership roles that will be affecting change in the coming years. Traditional leadership education is often expensive and not responsive to the needs of emerging youth leaders. These constraints can prevent many of them from pursuing further leadership development. To support young leaders, there is a strong recognition that we must include a youth perspective on what leadership development education should be and what practices were most beneficial. It is clear that a new approach to leadership development for youth working in non-profit organizations is needed.
Watch a Special CITY Leaders Video
After a comprehensive best practices review, extensive bottom-up engagement with young adults and consultation with several stakeholders, United Way launched a new youth leadership institute, The Creative Institute for Toronto’s Young (CITY) Leaders.
The format, content, delivery and name of the institute were the result of consultation with young adults. CITY Leaders provides young adults with the practical knowledge and tools to become effective leaders, navigators and connectors in Toronto's non-profit sector and communities, through theoretical education, applied learning, mentoring, online engagement and peer networking. Participants graduate with a Certificate of Leadership from The University of Toronto’s Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social Work and United Way Toronto.
Graduating to a great future
Having graduated as cohort representative of the 2011 CITY Leaders class, Agapi Gessesse is now setting her sights on a bright future in community building and municipal politics. Read Agapi’s story
Becoming a community leader
Having graduated as cohort representative of the 2011 CITY Leaders class, Alex Vaghar is completing his first documentary film and preparing for post-secondary education.
Read Alex’s story