Alberta Council for Global Cooperation
Suite 205, 10816A - 82 Avenue
Edmonton, Alberta, Canada T6E 2B3
Phone: (780) 988-0200
Fax: (780) 988-0211

Change Your World Program

Change Your World Youth Leadership Program 2017

NOTE:  Nominations open February 13th!  Check back here on that date to download the nomination form!

Peace cannot be kept by force; it can only be achieved by understanding - Albert Einstein

Are you a peacebuilder, community mobilizer, and global citizen?  Are you driven to think critically about the world, and to learn, share, and act for global change?  Are you ready to change your world by first challenging and changing yourself?  If so, join ACGC and the Mennonite Central Committee Alberta (MCC AB) for the 2017 Change Your World Alberta Youth Leadership Program in Alberta and Uganda!   

The Change Your World Youth Leadership Program is a FREE, 10-month intensive learning opportunity for 5 Alberta youth in Grades 10-11 interested in critically thinking and learning about community development in Alberta dn Uganda, sharing their learning with others, and taking action! The 2017 program will particularly focus on the importance of building and maintaining peace in communities.  

The program has three stages: 

In the Learn stage, youth will participate in two months of intensive study before spending two weeks visiting projects supported by MCC and other Alberta-based organizations in Uganda.  Youth will be listeners and learners while in Uganda, interacting with community parters, hearing their stories, and documenting their experience through photos and film. 

Upon return, youth will begin to Share their experiences, through running their own engagement campaign.  ACGC will assit youth in sharing their stories in a variey of ways, through public presentations, social media, photoes, blogs and film.

Finally, in order to truly make an impact and apply their knowledge, youth will Act by carrying out a peacebuilding project in their school or community on an issue inspired by their experience, documenting their experiences along the way!   


Am I eligible?

Youth have to be current residents of Alberta, and Canadian citizens, currently in Grade 10 or 11 at the time of application to the program.


What are the dates of the program?

Learn: The study program runs May and June 2017, with the visit to Uganda in July 2017.  (Exact dates to be determined).  A 2 day pre-departure orientation and a 2-day debrief will take place immediately before and after the international trip.  

Share:  Youth engagement campaigns will run between September 2017 - March 2018.  Participants will also participate in ACGC’s Annual Conference in Calgary September 15-17th! 

Act:  Youth action projects will take place between September 2017-March 2018. 

Youth MUST make themselves available for all aspects of the program or unfortunately, they will not be eligible to participate. 


What does the program cost?

The majority of the program cost is covered by a grant from Global Affairs Canada through the Alberta Council for Global Cooperation. 

What is covered:  Return airfaire from Canada, food, accommodations, local transportation in Uganda, travel and medical insurance, visa to enter Uganda

What is NOT covered:  Internet and phone costs for participating in the study program; personal belongings and toiletries, cost of obtaining a passport, travel medication and immunizations (required), travel to and from a common drop-off and pick-up point in Alberta before international travel (Calgary or Edmonton - TBD).  On average, participants spent between $400-600 each on these costs*

*Where such costs are a barrier, ACGC will work with the selected youth to ensure finances are not a barrier to their participation. 


How do I apply?

Youth must be nominated by a community member, teacher, youth worker, or other adult. Parental consent is required upon nomination.  Youth are selected by a committee made up of representatives of ACGC, MCC Alberta, Keiskamma Canada Foundation (the previous program host organization), and previous youth participants.  Shortlisted candidates will be required to undergo a telephone interview. 

Nominations will be open between February 13th - March 31st. 


Who is the ideal candidate?

We recognize that there are many international learning opportunities availalbe to youth; however, there are very few opportunities available with such a minimal cost, and no fundraising, for participants. ACGC therefore encourages community members to nominate youth who would stand to benefit the most from this opportunity, nominating individuals who are mature and ready for this experience, but are just awaiting the chance. 

We make the selection of individuals who together will make up a diverse and passionate team, ready to work hard and share their experience together and with others. 


I need more information.  Who do I contact?

You can contact Leah at 780-988-0200, or email

To learn more about the Mennonite Central Committee and their work in Alberta, visit or, watch this fun video!



Change Your World 2015: Alberta Youth Leadership Tour to South Africa

ACGC and Keiskamma Canada are proud to have hosted another great Change Your World: Alberta Youth Leadership Tour!

The 2015 Change Your World team was made up of (from left to right):  Lasha Aytenfisu of Edmonton; Reana Szabo-Mansfield of Wainwright; Sean Sander of Lethbridge; Abdul Sheikh of Edmonton; and Deanne Savard of Peace River.   Students had an amazing time experiencing life in rural South Africa, connecting with youth, and learning about community development from those at the Keiskamma Canada Foundation and their partner, the Keiskamma Trust


 Now, the students are ready to share their stories!  

Calling all Teachers!

Download this lesson plan titled: Comparing Student Perspectives in Canada and South Africa

This lesson plan was developed by Marilyn Scott, a volunteer with the Keiskamma Canada Foundation, to assist teachers in expanding students’ awareness of life for students rural in South Africa. The lesson is designed to complement the use of the ACGC 2015 Change Your World: Alberta Youth Leadership Tour documentary in the classroom.

The youth had the opportunity to watch Keiskamma artists at work, doing embrodiery, wire art, felt-making, and ceramics.  Here, Reana is trying a few stiches on a wire flower being made-to-order for a shop in Cape Town.  
Alberta youth spending time with South African youth in Hamburg.  
Alberta youth learning about Keiskamma’s gardening programmes. Princess, pictured here, was instrumental in expanding the gogo (grandmother) gardens in communities surrounding Hamburg.  
Together with ACGC 2015 Top 30 Under 30 award recipient, Angalahka Mangwane at Keiskamma’s Vulindlela ICT and Youth Resource Centre. Angalakha was telling the youth about the various education programmes Keiskamma is involved with.  
The youth were privledged to be invited into the home of Mama James, a local community health care monitor hired by Keiskamma to monitor patients in her village.  Mama James was kind enough to bring students around to various villager’s homes, and tell the students of the progress being made in their lives and community.  
About the Change Your World Youth Leadership Tour 2015:



The focus of the 2015 tour was on the concepts of health and community development. In South Africa, youth met with staff and volunteers from Keiskamma Canada Foundation and their partner, the Keiskamma Trust, as well as community members who have been impacted by development efforts. Pre-departure training and debriefing ensured that the youth were supported in understanding their experiences, emotionally and intellectually. As part of the pre-departure training, youth were provided with weekly webinars and/or readings. Through this experience, youth learned more about the work being done in partnership with Albertan non-governmental organizations and their international colleagues, and how they can continue to be involved in international development, locally and globally.  

Upon their return, the selected youth participated in a speaking tour in their communities across Alberta, sharing their experiences and perceptions through a presentation and video they created during their time in South Africa. This tour was shared with students and community organizations across Alberta throughout the fall of 2015. Presentation coordination, facilitation, and support was provided by ACGC. 

Read about the 2015 Tour

Read about the 2015 tour in the Alberta Teachers’ Association Newsletter, 10 February 2015 edition here.
Read a story about Keiskamma Canada and their partner in the ACGC Teach Newsletter, Volume 9 Winter 2015 edition here.
Read about Deanne’s experience in ACGC’t Teach Newsletter, Volume 11 Fall 2015 edition here
The Keiskamma Canada Foundation:
The Keiskamma Canada Foundation, founded in 2008 in Edmonton, organizes and supports local and regional fundraisers in Canada, raising awareness of the work of the Keiskamma Trust and providing opportunities for people to purchase the beautiful handmade embroideries for which the Trust is so renowned.
The Keiskamma Trust:
The Keiskamma Trust has worked in the Peddie South District of the Eastern Cape, South Africa, for over ten years.  They have a strong track-record of innovative and multi-faceted community development projects that together provide holistic support and intervention for their beneficiaries.  They work with hundreds of vulnerable people each day in an effort to enrich and encourage healthy families, individuals, and entire villages.  
In 2000, their founder, Dr Carol Hofmeyr began to work in the village of Hamburg, at the mouth of the Keiskamma River.  Her combined skills as a medical doctor, creative fine-artist, as well as her passion for human rights, transformed the lives of the people she worked with and taught.  Those qualities still inform and underlie everything that the Trust endeavours to do today.  
Today, the Trust operates an art project, a health program, and education program, and a music academy, reaching over 47 rural villages in this area where endemic poverty and disease continue to have devastating effects.  Youth on the Change Your World Tour will have the opportunity to visit these projects, and learn from those carrying out and benefiting from the work of the Trust.  Youth on this tour will also have the opportunity to spend time with local youth their own age, learning to bridge cultural and language barriers, and building lasting relationships across continents.  

Get an inside look at previous tours!  

The 2015 tour is ACGC’s fourth Change Your World: Alberta Youth Leadership Tour. In 2010, five Albertan youth toured seven international development projects in Ethiopia. In the summer of 2012, five Albertan students were selected to tour communities and international development projects, as well as partner with youth in Peru. The third tour took place in 2013, where youth focused on climate justice in Nicaragua. As part of their participation in the tours, all participants committed to sharing their experiences with others as a way of engaging their peers in international development issues. The youth presented videos of their experience and prepared presentations to over 3500 students and 50 commmunity groups throughout the province.  See photos and videos of previous tours here