YouLEAD and Child Protection in Development (CPID) Training Programs

YouLEAD and Child Protection in Development (CPID) are innovative youth leadership, skills training, and child protection learning programs, training young people and practitioners working with communities to protect and support the well-being of children and youth. They offers four levels of engagement that increase practitioner's employability and prepare participants for further training/education:

• A community of practice through IICRD's learning hub to network and share ideas - online and face to face- on leadership and how to best support child, youth, family, and community well-being

• A skill recognition stamp system delivered in partnership with community-based organizations and employers to acknowledge the development of skills or capacities that support child, family and community well-being and culture, and builds knowledge, skills and self awareness

• Specialized training for practitioners to enhance knowledge, skills, and attitudes in professional practice

• Post-secondary opportunities at the Bachelors, Masters, and Doctoral levels through directed studies and capstone projects focused on leadership or child protection in development. These are currently offered through Royal Roads University (RRU) or other post secondary institutions. I


The YouLEAD and CPID programs focus on the development of:

Self Awareness and Reflection – such as reflective practice, listening, mindfulness and cultivating a practice for self care

Relevant Knowledge – such as understanding child protection systems, holistic child development, human, community, and international development,children's rights and working with vulnerable children, youth and families

Tangible Skills – such as tools for meaningful engagement with children, youth, families and communities, listening and talking with children and youth, strength-based reflection and inquiry, and building unique partnerships

Strategies and Approaches for Accountable Action – such as child-centred accountability, rights based indicators, working across systems, effective use social media, and creativity and innovation.

For more information, please our learning hub.   Our Community of Practice currently has over 200 members! Join now to access our group discussions, our library and online courses.




The first certificate course piloted was the Journey course, at Liard Hotsprings, BC. with 12 child protection/community development workers. The Journey explores the importance of self – the gifts and challenges that practitioners bring to this area of work, and the means to develop a reflective practice that supports their work with young people. The learning took place both in the classroom and on the land, taking the participants on an inner and outer journey to build the foundation of a community based child protection worker. The Journey was facilitated by Julian Norris, in collaboration with the IICRD team.


In February 2014, we officially launched our new communications platform: Child Protection in Development, a community of practice:

IICRD facilitated a course for 7 students attending the residency for the Doctor in Social Sciences program at Royal Roads University (RRU). Strengthening Child Protection in Community: An Evidence-Based Approach to Child Protection Systems, focused on understanding key concepts, approaches, and strategies to strengthen child protection systems with an emphasis on communitycentred and evidence-based approaches. The Systems Strengthening course was facilitated by Micheal Montgomery and Cheryl Heykoop. More on the systems strengthening course found here

In August, in partnership with the BC Ministry for Aboriginal Relations and Reconciliation (MARR), IICRD invited 25 Aboriginal youth leaders from the across the province of BC to attend Creative Approaches to Engaging Young People in Social Change at Royal Roads University. This four-day course exemplified the application of our experiential learning tools and our 5 core principles. Creative Approaches was faciliated by Micheal Montgomery and MARR Executive Director David Stevenson in collaboration with the IICRD team.


The Aboriginal youth worker cohort formed during the Creative Approaches course at RRU continued on to participate in the Journey in June 2015, also included the participation of Aboriginal youth leaders from Ontario, the Chief of Tswout First Nation and it was held on Pender Island, B.C. It was facilitated by IICRD Associate Julian Norris, Cowichan Nation Elder Kasalid, and MARR Executive Director David Stevenson, in collaboration with the IICRD team.


“This was a great learning experience for me…it made me realize many strengths I did not see in myself beforehand.”

- Journey Course I Participant


“Getting to know the Circle of Rights approach and applying it to a fictitious case study showed me the potential of understanding complex situations and how they are best approached by leading with children, starting from strengths, and engaging with partners.”

“Things are not what they seem, conclusions cannot be made until you have listened to and understood the perspective of the child.”

“Thanks for making me feel at home, with a sense of belonging”.

- Systems Strengthening Course participants


“It was memorable and fun and exceptional. This was the best one by far”
“I was amazed that I could be that comfortable with complete strangers”
“I loved the all of the tools they encouraged problem solving and team work”
-Creative Approaches I course participants

"I learned that it is not always the big things…the small steps and things you do have a lasting impact!"

“I fell in love with myself again”

“I am re-inspired to try new tools and trust that the work is helping the youth in our community”

“To meet the challenges with kindness and without judgment”

“My expectations were exceeded by the depth, innovation and quality of course content, and facilitation"

- Journey Course II participants

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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)

mailing address: 309 - 1694 Cedar Hill Cross Rd, Victoria, BC, V8P 2P7
office address for meetings (please confirm in advance): 5th floor - 1112 Fort Street, Victoria, BC, V8V 3K9
+1 (250) 891-2424

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