The youth in your program know first-hand why afterschool is important and what it provides them. They can be some of your best, and most authentic, messengers. Be sure to involve youth in your event program as well as in the planning.
Lights On is a great opportunity to let youth express their views on afterschool.
The Institute for Citizens & Scholars (C&S) recognizes the unique opportunity to leverage the out-of-school time space to help young people cultivate civic knowledge, skills, and dispositions, and interact with people from diverse backgrounds and beliefs in their communities. Intergenerational co-design and co-leadership is an extraordinarily powerful approach to this work.
This past summer, C&S partnered with Civic Spring Project youth grantees from the Kentucky Student Voice Team (KSVT) to produce a set of tools that can be used by youth and adults in the out-of-school-time field. During this year’s Lights on Afterschool event, use the following assessment, How Intergenerational is your Organization? Quiz and Conversation Guide from The Institute for Citizens & Scholars and The Kentucky Student Voice Team to host an engaging dialogue with your team. And stay tuned for more information about a Webinar with KSVT students hosted by AfterSchool Alliance in early December!
Turn your Lights On event into an opportunity for youth to make a difference in their communities. We’ve got some great ideas from Youth Service America.
Search for project ideas in these categories:
Issue-based guides and ideas are available in the following areas:
These free downloadable resources and video trainings will guide you as you take your project from idea to action through the project planning steps of investigation, preparation and planning, action, reflection, and demonstration/celebration.
Learn how to enhance the service-learning process through play, with Great Group Games for Service. This tipsheet has a game idea for each step of the IPARD/C service-learning process.
Find even more free resources in the YSA Knowledge Center, including these special collections:
Finally, see how you can be part of the 50by250 campaign to increase youth participation levels to 50% by America’s 250th birthday on July 4, 2026.