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Teen Green Venturing After School Program

This program has grown from efforts started in 2019.

Draft 12/30/21
To sponsor or partner please contact Amy McMorrow Hunter, amy@theclimateeconomy.com, 618.713.2896.

Goal: Enable “teen green venturing” toward a more just, sustainable and prosperous (“green”) world by:

  • Teaching teens, especially in marginalized communities, how to identify, envision and create new ways of doing things that are good for climate, economy and humanity. They can help solve big problems, like pollution, housing and energy poverty, violence, and inequality. Green Venturing starts in our own homes and communities.
  • Giving them the time, space, resources and guidance they need in cooperation with local community partner organizations and businesses, and 
  • Helping them to track their progress, amplify their voices in the community, and take action towards their goals, even starting community projects or businesses.

Structure: 

  1. This is a 1 ½ – hour per week after school program that runs year-round (with some weeks off during holiday periods) for teens in the community, likely Tuesdays and starting in late January or early February 2022.
  2. It is facilitated by The Climate Economy Education Inc, the Southern Illinois Cooperative Business Fund and the Carbondale Public Library, and additional community partners who will provide educational programming and/or financial or other resources.  
  3. Meetings will take place at the Carbondale Public Library or other community space.
  4. Meetings will follow set schedules that include each time: 
    1. Snack and News: Global/local news and community happenings – facilitators will bring some headlines to discuss and eventually students can bring their own
    2. Topics and Skills Education: consists of watching relevant documentaries with facilitated discussions or getting problem-solving demonstrations (usually live, in-person, hands-on) from experts and businesses in our community in order to spark student interests. Topics include 1) solar and other renewable energy 2) blockchain, computing and coding 3) plastic waste recycling, our changing climate, and sustainable lifestyles and communities, 4) engineering, 5) local food/carbon network, hydroponics, regenerative agriculture 5) society/government 6) cooperative businesses/entrepreneurship.
    3. Venturing: time for students to explore their ideas/interests with mentors, and/or to create and carry out projects. Maker supplies will be made available, as well as computers for research/education. CLEANetwork.Earth can be used for online education, group facilitation and project management, and the Teen Green Venturing Hub can be used for project launch, implementation and competitions.
  5. This is a self-paced learning environment where students can join at any time, go at their own pace and work on individual or group projects.
  6. 2022 will be the pilot year for this program, while it’s based on well-established models for STEM education and making (1, 2, 3), and other educational programs of the partners (such as Youth Climate Economy Ventures, Cooperative Climate Venture Simulations).