Moving youth leadership training online

I am passionate about teaching young people about leadership. As a result of the pandemic we currently are unable to host in person events.  Consequently, the idea to take the Youth Leadership Program (YLP) online was born at the end of summer 2020. What a perfect way to create my Distinguished Toastmaster project! We are the guardians for the next generation of leaders. Our youth learn by following our examples. Consequently it’s up to us, the adults in their lives, to guide them and show them the way.

My reason

There is always a reason why we get involved with any program. Mine was my daughter. She was at the receiving end of unacceptable behaviour by her peers. As a result we looked for ways to help her. 

A powerful training resource

I certainly didn’t know about Toastmasters at the time. The possibility of such a training resource for our children by an organization didn’t cross my mind. I was beyond ecstatic when I joined Toastmasters and learned about the program. Under the guidance of Christina Kruis, DTM I started a new life experience. I met like minded people – innovators who believed in contributing to a future with strong world leaders.

Pilot online program

After many meetings with vastly different ideas, we kicked off a pilot program which just ended. The results were more than what I could ever have hoped for. Imagine 20 kids signing up and being committed throughout. Let your mind explore the different ways these kids competed to take on leadership roles. They conducted every session with poise, precision and professionalism. This 4-H group from Cremona, Alberta set the standard to strive for. With the bar raised so high, maintaining it requires a dedication to excellence.

Criteria for future youth leadership program online sessions

In conclusion, to be successful,  every program requires guidelines and criteria. This one is no exception. To run an online training of this caliber, prior to launching on their own, facilitators are requested to undergo an apprenticeship. This means, they attend and participate in a 6-to-8 week YLP online session. To obtain support and provide opportunities for others to receive training on delivering online, YLP coordinators must connect and register their program with the YLP Chair. Currently that person is Adam MacDonald, DTM. For this program to gain a global platform, the training and delivery should be consistent.

Are you our next program facilitator? Or interested in learning more? Contact Irma Goosen, Area D23 Director


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