What are different ways I can engage in my community?
Civic engagement is when we serve our communities. You can do this by joining or volunteering for charitable organizations, or getting more involved in your school.
Another type of civic engagement is political engagement. You can participate politically through:
- signing (or starting!) petitions for issues you care about
- participating in political demonstrations
Civic engagement has the potential to empower youth as a whole and provide you with the skills and self-confidence you need to become a leader.
What are some programs that can help me get involved?
The Ontario Partnership for Active and Engaged Youth developed the Play Works Partnership which are a bunch of different organizations that are concerned about the future of youth. In addition to providing resources on civic engagement, they also offer resources on sports and recreation, arts and culture. Play Works is dedicated to putting 13-19 year olds “in the know” on local and provincial political agendas, to help youth develop a sense of social responsibility.
Katimavik is one of Canada’s premier youth volunteer service organization, that puts young volunteers to work in their respective communities across a variety of programs, including civic engagement. Through their organization, youth can choose from a variety of projects in the areas of social services, environmental issues, poverty reduction, the arts and more.
ArtReach Toronto is a youth arts funding program that, in addition to offering funding for projects for young artists, also seeks to engage youth in their communities in a variety of ways—primarily by offering free monthly youth workshops. Examples of workshops offered in the past include Fundraising 101, Models of Youth Work and much more.
What do I need to know about voting?
Voting is your ticket to empowerment and an act of choosing a political candidate to represent you in government. By marking your ballot and placing it in a ballot box you say “yes” to a democratic society and to your right to participate in the law.
Before voting, you should learn about the different levels of government in Canada.
To vote, you need to make sure you're eligible and register in your riding. Learn how to vote in an election.