09 Oct YCI’s commitment to climate action expands with a new solutions accelerator program


Building on Youth Challenge International’s (YCI) successful Innovate MY Future program, the new Climate Solutions Accelerator, generously funded by the Ontario Trillium Foundation, offers the next step youth can take in furthering their climate action projects – or support them to launch a new initiative!

This 6-month accelerator program catapults youth-designed green businesses, social enterprises and climate action initiatives to success across the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area (GTHA).

YCI’s Climate Action Lead, Laura Haché, explains the drive behind youth action as we approach a pivotal moment for humanity in the face of the global climate movement:

“Today’s young people are at the frontlines of climate action mobilization worldwide. Motivated by genuine anxiety for their future and frustrated with the delayed action from older generations, youth today are eager to roll up their sleeves and make change happen.”

The program is open to GTHA youth aged 19-25 with a passion for climate action and an idea for creative solutions to current climate challenges – whether still a concept or already in full development, YCI’s accelerator is designed to help launch or grow climate solutions in any stage.

Included in the program are comprehensive training sessions for participants – Climate Leaders – to gain valuable entrepreneurial skills through the Incubate, Accelerate and Plan for Future phases. Climate Leaders further develop their ideas, execute on their plans and prepare for the future of their initiatives. Topics covered throughout the training sessions include systems and design thinking, leveraging innovation to drive social change, community organizing and building team networks.

The accelerator also incorporates workshops in grant writing and funding procurement – skills that Climate Leaders will put towards accessing grant funding for their project. In addition, Climate Leaders will get exclusive access to an impressive roster of mentors, coaches and technical advisors.

Laura also explains further benefits of the program:

“It’s a really unique, integrated opportunity for youth to see their ideas or projects develop beyond what they feel they could have achieved on their own. In addition to the mentorship, coaching and technical advisory elements of the program, participants will engage in peer-to-peer circles where they’ll be able to share their learnings with others, and in turn learn from them. There’s something to be said about collective youth empowerment – the near-tangible energy is inspiring and has driven the success of our domestic climate action programming in Canada.”

Recruitment for the Climate Solutions Accelerator fall program, launching October 21, is underway and spots are filling up fast. Apply today at youthclimateaction.ca and accelerate the success of your climate action initiative!