Three Van Buren County Teens have been selected to attend the CADCA’s Midyear Training Institute and the National Youth Leadership Initiative Experience. This event is being held in Austin, TX July 22-25th. Cassie Johnson and Cierstynn Welcher, both Van Buren High School students, were selected by a team of adult SAFE Coalition members who reviewed all applications submitted for the event. Their applications were rated the highest and were given the honor of attending this year. Along with these two youth Lydia Heald will be attending the event as a Youth Facilitator for NYLI’s advanced track.
CADCA's NYLI Experience is built on the framework of the National Coalition Institute's National Coalition Academy. In these sessions, both youth and their adult advisors learn how to help community coalitions be more effective in producing community change. The NYLI Experience helps coalitions build their capacity to foster youth leadership in the design, implementation and evaluation of action strategies addressing community problems. In addition, this training builds the relationship between the youth leader and the adult coalition coach.
The participants learn about the Strategic Prevention Framework (SPF), logic models, strategic planning, developing interventions, advocating for change, evaluation, and sustainability. The NYLI Experience is a CADCA workforce development strategy that teaches what is required to create and nurture the growth of committed leaders and their work within coalitions. It better equips youth and adults to develop an action plan that clearly defines the strategies that young leaders will carry out to address the problems and goals that the coalition is striving to affect.
It is an honor to be selected to attend this event. The coalition only sends two Van Buren County students each year based on applications of the YLC members. These teens should be commended for their hard work and dedication to their community! Congratulations Cassie and Cierstynn!