CBYF Initiative Description

The Communities Building Youth Futures (CBYF) Initiative is a partnership between the Tamarack Institute and Economic and Social Development Canada to assist in improving outcomes for underrepresented youth in 13 communities. Portage la Prairie has been selected as one of the 13 communities to participate in the 5-year initiative. CBYF in collaboration with community stakeholders works to improve youth education and programing in the community.
The main purpose of the CBYF Initiative is to assess and address barriers for youth between the ages 15-29 in the community specifically around education and employment. To meet this goal, a local collaborative table has been established to work together with youth from our community to build a common agenda to help address the identified needs.
Working together with local youth, we can help build a sense of belonging for youth in our community to become engaged in their futures and the futures of others.

CBYF Program Booklet – PDF

CBYF Goals

Address the persistent gap in high school attainment among youth in Portage la Prairie.
Develop strategies that enable young people to:
Complete high school
Be engaged in the community
Successfully navigate transition from youth to adulthood
Contribute to field-building research and practice focused on youth engagement, health and well-being in communities.

Issues we want to address:

Make portage welcoming for youth being inclusive and supportive
Bridge employment, education, wellbeing and opportunity equity gaps
Empower youth voice to lead poverty reduction strategies
Empower youth to build pride in themselves and their community

Vision we want to achieve:

Improve graduation rates and opportunities for post graduations studies
Improve employment rates
Build a generation that has a sense of belonging to our community
Instill hope and optimism in youth
Be a community that provides equal opportunity for everyone

Our Principles & Guiding Values:

• Commit to a shared vision of an increasingly youth motivated and driven community, by using strengths-based and evidence-based practice.
• Operate with transparency, objectiveness, pragmatism.
• Respect each other’s diversity and autonomy and maintain an environment of trust, equality and reciprocity.
• Remain accountable to each other, to the CBYF funder, to respective organizations and their mandates, and to the communities and individuals at the core of CBYF’s vision.
• Foster a collaborative process to achieve the best coordinated outcomes.

Our Strategies:

• Brainstorm holistic ways to engage youth
• Research
• Gather data from partners
• Build trust

CBYF Structure:

CBYF Convener/Fiscal Sponsor

• Local charitable organization that receives the funding from Tamarack to operate the CBYF project
• Is a member of an accountable to the CBYF Leadership Table
• May be the location for the CBYF team

CBYF Leadership Table

• 10-15 local leaders including youth leadership
• Campions and provides strategic directions for the initiative
• Establishes common agenda for the initiative
• Holds commitment to common agenda and Theory of Change
• Aligns work of action teams
• Engages other stakeholders
• Mobilizes resources and knowledge
• Provides guidance and support to CBYF staff

CBYF Staff Team

• Include 1-3 staff
• Include the Steering Committee and core staff of the backbone infrastructure
• Support the work of the Steering Committee and the initiative overall- includes SC Co-Chairs and Key Staff of the initiative
• Design and facilitate engagement across the initiative and meetings of various groups
• Hands-on support for the initiative on a day to day basis- including; planning, researching, organizing, communicating, coordinating and supporting data and measurement practices

Working Groups or Action Teams

• Include 4-6 groups of 10-15 members of diverse membership of content experts, community organizations, business, government and community
• Action Teams Chairs are also members of the Leadership Table to foster alignment and coordination across teams
• Form around ideas and opportunities
• Scale-up on-the ground solutions addressing key priorities
• Co-design and refine solutions around key shifts/strategies priorities
• Each work group includes youth

CBYF Community Network

• Provides insights and ideas on the key shifts and ideas impacting youth
• Offers feedback on priorities to maximize impact of the initiative
• Contributes knowledge, resources and connection

The CBYF Ecosystem:

• All the components of the CBYF Structure.
• Working Groups or action teams on specific topics or areas of focus.
• Other community organizations supporting youth including businesses employing youth, other non-profits, government services, etc.