Through the Global Youth Partnerships Solution, YCI works with local development partners to design and implement youth innovation programs through Canadian volunteers and peer-to-peer learning. Powerful partnerships with a sector focus on health, private sector development and democratic governance. Education, gender equality and environmental sustainability are central to every program.
Peer-to-peer learning methodology is at the root of every GYP program. By giving youth the chance to learn from youth-led mediums like workshops, sport, edutainment, and mentorship, we harness the full energy and potential of young people to impact themselves and their communities. For five years this method has raised a new generation of budding entrepreneurs, activists, and community leaders.
YCI facilitates cross-cultural collaboration through our strong volunteer infrastructure. Volunteers from Canada and around the world work alongside youth in our partner communities to co-facilitate and co-implement the most effective programs with local champions, leaders and staff. Volunteers live, work and play in local homestays within the community.
YCI collaborates directly with local partner organizations to uncover needs for capacity support, then works with our Canadian network to find young volunteers with the skills and drive to support the organizational needs identified. Over the past five years we have been building capacity with 11 organizational partners in Ghana and Tanzania.
In 2009, YCI and our family of local partners realized the opportunity to design a five-year program to support the capacity development of partner organizations in Tanzania and Ghana.
Through creative conversations with local partners in the field, and young Ghanaians and Tanzanians, YCI explored possible routes to deliver skills capacity to our partners, uncovering needs and opportunities to build programs that kept youth at the centre of the conversation.
Through a co-creative process the team landed on a solution where youth innovation and development were fuelled by youth themselves, and where peer-to-peer learning would foster deeper and more effective capacity building for the future.
Over four years, the program has evolved to serve the ever-changing needs of our local partners. A network of local staff compliment YCI’s core team in Toronto to ensure that our partners and youth volunteers and local partners are supported in a way that allows them to realize their full potential as agents of change.
An independent evaluation of the program was completed in 2014 and the learnings have been incorporated into future program design, and shared across numerous platforms including conferences, events, and digital media.