By Leah Baade
The Victoria Foundation’s Vital Youth initiative is currently entering its eighth year. Working with more than 100 students in seven local high schools, the Victoria Foundation is pleased to offer this experiential learning program that teaches community leadership and philanthropy.
Previously named Youth in Philanthropy, the program has been renamed this year to reflect the valuable community impact of Victoria’s Vital Signs® Students are encouraged to identify their individual and group values and then use the Vital Signs® report to explore challenges and opportunities within their communities.
“This group of students was exceptional – smart, provocative, challenging and engaged. We met early in the morning and in spite of busy schedules one of the team members was able to visit READ,” said Claire Rettie, Executive Director, Victoria READ Society.
“In a social and funding climate that is increasingly challenging, working with these young people provided me with a much-needed burst of energy.”
Last year, student committees granted a total of $17,500 to 16 local charities. Each of the grants made a valuable contribution to various issue areas identified by participants of theVictoria’s Vital Signs® survey.
Participating schools include Belmont Secondary, Frances Kelsey Secondary, Oak Bay High, Reynolds Secondary, Victoria High, St. Michaels University School, and, in partnership with the Saanich Peninsula Foundation, Stelly’s Secondary School.
For the first time ever this year, and with the support of TELUS, the Victoria Foundation will launch the Youth Vital Signs report as its own publication. The launch will take place on Saturday, November 19th at the TEDx Victoria Youth event.
Leah Baade is Vital Youth and Social Media Coordinator with Victoria Foundation