Ten ideas pollinating (Part 3: Work groups)

Three work groups will help us create the ‘social glue’ for an equitable, resilient and locally-driven youth sector

Over the last few weeks, we’ve been sharing about the renewed purpose and ongoing projects that YSI is bringing into the Spring. We will be focusing on our local efforts that catalyze cross-cultural social change. Meanwhile, we are deepening our learning about how our province-wide network can create the ‘social glue’ needed for a more equitable, resilient and locally-driven youth sector.

In today’s Part 3, we’d like to share a bit about our strategy for carrying these intentions forward. We have struck three work groups to carry forward our vision in the short-, medium- and long-term.


8. Our Design Workgroup is co-creating a new network structure for long-term resilience

Our emerging and co-designed network structure will balance participatory decision-making with holistic economic sustainability. 

That means we will be researching and developing alternative ways to support YSI financially, while building internal governance rules that guide how we allocate resources. 

All options are on the table, so long as they are consistent with YSI’s values of equity, direct participation and youth-focused intergenerational leadership. Alternatives could include cooperative enterprises, member-based arrangements, partnerships to deliver fee-for-services, and others. Whatever model, we aim to develop decision-making and accountability processes that integrate Indigenous clan teachings and participatory-democratic processes.

The next step? Getting clear on the intersection between our passions, our strengths and the economic fundamentals that can sustain our work.


9. Our Granting Workgroup is rehearsing our new structure with partnerships over the medium term

We are already seeking out partnerships and resource-generating opportunities that can sustain our development as we continue delivering impactful projects over the medium term. These are emerging opportunities that enable us to rehearse our ideal future in the present moment.

That means producing high-quality proposals for funding and joint initiatives that advance YSI’s mission and purpose. 

The next step? Building relationships with the wide array of kindred spirits across Ontario’s youth sector, and communicating our core values and offerings to funding and policy bodies.


10. Our 'Base Camp' Workgroup is providing ongoing operational focus to sustain self-organized action in the short-term

In order to form new partnerships and plan for a strong future, we are ensuring that we have the essential operational supports needed to sustain our volunteer-led community.

That means consolidating our work around key processes and practical roles needed to “steer the ship” through this lean and pivotal transition period. We will keep our focus on the nitty-gritty tasks of content management; volunteer engagement & internal communications; grant reporting & tracking; as well as storytelling & external comms.

The next step? Implementing a streamlined set of guidelines for how our volunteer community works together online for maximum impact and minimum housekeeping.


Spring is alive! Our community is ready for growth!

It is an exciting time in our community. We are focusing hard on the work required to bloom. We look forward to sharing the fruits of this labour soon!