YouLEAD Educational Framework

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Educational Framework


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YouLEAD Educational Framework

Through transformational leadership programming, YouLEAD builds your capacity to support the well-being of young people and strengthen the resilience of communities in Canada and around the world.

"The tools were useful, even when life changes. It gave me a window to hope that things could change." - Cheyenne Stonechild, YouLEAD Participant

YouLEAD aims to increase participant capacity on 20 specific abilities (values-in-action) that IICRD considers essential to support the well-being of young people.  Explore YouLEAD's Educational Framework for your information about these values-in-action


Participants will explore how to put 5 core values into action across 4 learning areas: spirit, heart, hand, and head. These values include: Justice (dark blue, fifth circle), Reflective Leadership (dark green, fourth circle), Holistic Perspective (orange, third circle), Belonging (Red, second circle, and Dignity (light green, first circle).

  • JUSTICE -  We work on community development that meets the needs & respects the rights of all children, while helping them to both self-advocate and collectively face systemic barriers.
  • REFLECTIVE LEADERSHIP -  We believe in lifelong learning and the continuing refinement of the self both as an instrument of change, and as an effective partner with others on change initiatives.
  • HOLISTIC PERSPECTIVE - We believe in the fundamental link between child rights and the future health of the planet, so there is an increasing focus in our work on participatory & sustainable development.
  • BELONGING - We know that learning occurs in relation with others, and strive to create safe, inclusive situations for groJwth. Our work is always based in local context & traditions while making connections to work cross-culturally.
  • DIGNITY -  We respect each unique person and take a strength-based approach.

Learning Areas

Learning Area 1: SPIRIT -  We focus on attitudes / deep values & encourage (self-defined) connection to a higher purpose / being.

  1. Strength-Based Paradigm: understand and apply new paradigms - DIGNITY (Value-in-Action, dark green)
  2. Self In Community: ground yourself in personal history (culture and family/lineage) while appreciating diversity (other people & perspectives) - BELONGING (Value-in-Action, red)
  3. Social Responsibility - care for the well-being of humanity and all life on the planet. - HOLISTIC PERSPECTIVE (Value-in-Action, orange)
  4. Commit to Reflexivity: Check your self and others, commit to lifelong learning - REFLECTIVE LEADERSHIP (Value-in-Action, light green)
  5. Collaborative Approaches: Support individual & collective ideas and accountabilities - JUSTICE (Value-in-Action, dark blue)

Learning Area 2: HEART - We support cultivation of healthy attachments & emotional intelligence

  1. Respond to Challenges: build resilience through creative problem solving and communications - DIGNITY (Value-in-Action, dark green)
  2. Cross-Cultural Skills: use empathy to manage cross-cultural encounters & manage conflicts constructively - BELONGING (Value-in-Action, red)
  3. Cultivate Care: connect to land (local language, stories and the elements) and cultivate respect and care for people and environment - HOLISTIC PERSPECTIVE (Value-in-Action, orange)
  4. Understand Trauma: learn about impacts of trauma on whole self, personal triggers, as well as intergenerational trauma and impacts on a people - REFLECTIVE LEADERSHIP (Value-in-Action, light green)
  5. Create Connections: & shared vision while embracing the complexity of community - JUSTICE (Value-in-Action, dark blue)

Learning Area 3: HANDS - We practice skills which can be applied to meet real challenges

  1. Lead Effective Meetings: Facilitate group meetings & experiential learning sessions -DIGNITY (Value-in-action, dark green, first circle)
  2. Cultural Competency: Cultural awareness and competency including respect for diverse peoples and ability to adapt practice to be culturally appropriate -BELONGING (Value-in-action, red, second circle)
  3. Community-Based Action: Prepare to center, plan, and implement action -HOLISTIC PERSPECTIVE (Value-in-action, orange, third circle)
  4. Personal Accountability: Self organize and practice personal accountability -REFLECTIVE LEADERSHIP (Value-in-action, dark green, fouth circle)
  5. Meaningful Conversations: Interact with people and communities and facilitate -JUSTICE (Value-in-action, blue, fifth circle)

Learning Area 4: HEAD - We inquire together into “evidence-based” ideas & theories, with respect for diverse sources of knowledge.

  1. Power Dynamics Analysis: Ideas for working equitably using a rights based-perspective -DIGNITY (Value-in-action, dark green, first circle)
  2. Traditional Stories: Engage with traditional local knowledges & stories BELONGING (Value-in-action, red, second circle)
  3. Sustainable Development: Principles of sustainable development & how to understand and lead in complex systems HOLISTIC PERSPECTIVE (Value-in-action, orange, third circle)
  4. Clarify Personal Visions & Values: goals & biases [seek & receive feedback to align behaviour with goals & values] - REFLECTIVE LEADERSHIP (Value-in-action, dark green, fouth circle)
  5. Child & Human Development: familiar with Child, Human & Indigenous Peoples rights - JUSTICE (Value-in-action, blue, fifth circle)

Learn about how to integrate these values-in-action through our Courses & Community.

"I don't know where I would be if I did not have YouLEAD. This program carried me. It kept the momentum to my growth going, opening up space to heal." - Sarah Sandy 



Imagine a world where we build on the core strengths of children, their families, and communities, to create dignity, belonging, and justice for all.


Contact Info

International Institute for Child Rights and Development (IICRD)

A Canadian non-profit charity working locally, nationally, and internationally

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