Welcome! Learn about our YouthxYouth language and ask us more questions!
What do you mean when you say education?
Education does not mean schooling. Schooling is the institutionalization of our education but far from the only place where we learn and get educated. John Dewey once said, "Education is a social process. Education is growth. Education is not a preparation for life; education is life itself." So, when talking about young people leading the process of educational change, we mean in school and, perhaps even more importantly, in their lives outside of school.
How can I better understand the problems we face?
The next two questions are elements of our YouthxYouth approach- see here for more.
Sensemaking is the process by which people make sense of their personal and collective experiences and ascribe meaning to things. Unfortunately, our industrial education systems have disrupted our ability to make sense of the world as they divided knowledge into separate disciplines that rarely communicate with one another. We need to develop the ability to think more holistically to understand the complex systems we are a part of.
The process by which we understand, reflect on, attribute meaning to, and interpret situations, relationships and ourselves. Meaning-making is contextual, depends on and differs due to our life experience and ways of seeing the world and the beings around us.
Ok, and once I’ve made sense and meaning of the situation I’m trying to address, what’s next?
Imagination is the soil that brings dreams to life. It enables us to bring clarity to what we want to change and what is truly possible. Unfortunately, research shows that as we go through school, our ability to imagine decreases steadily. We need to recover the ability to imagine if we are to create the world of our deepest longings.
You might be thinking, why radical, why reimagination?
In this context:
- Radical means to change the fundamental nature of something, at the root.
- Reimagining (vs. imagining) reminds us that this is a continual process. That we can practice engaging with our imagination time and time again, to bring different ways of being into the world.
So, how do we go about bringing these visions to life?
Prefiguration is living the future you wish existed, today. It involves modeling and embodying the kinds of behaviors, relationships & structures you wish were our reality. People who decide to use prefiguration as an activist strategy recognize that the means are the ends. For instance, if you want peace (i.e. the ends) you cannot get there by using war (the means). Peace begets peace, love begets love.
Wow, that sounds great. I'm trying to create this world but getting stuck in how I can relate with care and love to those who cause pain and still care for myself. What do you suggest?
Revolutionary love is a philosophy and practice that offers us a way forward in a world that promotes divisiveness, oppression, and ways of living that are disconnected.
It is associated with lawyer, activist, and author Valarie Kaur, who defines it as: “Revolutionary love” is the choice to enter into wonder and labour for others, for our opponents, and for ourselves in order to transform the world around us. [...] Loving only ourselves is escapism; loving only our opponents is self-loathing; loving only others is ineffective. All three practices together make love revolutionary, and revolutionary love can only be practised in community.”
How could I create a Community?
Weaving is the practice of interconnecting people, projects, and places in synergistic and purposeful ways. In order to create the “glocal” (globally-informed, locally-driven) education transformation we seek, we need to deepen this capacity and co-create thriving communities that enhance the wellbeing of self, society, and nature.
Peer-learning is learning without a hierarchy or a ‘teacher’ in the traditional sense. It is a form of self-directed education that recognises collaboration and respect as essential to the process of learning. It might take the form of a self organized study-group, a Global Action Circle or a support group. Research suggests that young people learn better when they are taught by peers rather than their teachers and that teaching their peers allows young people to cement what they have learned.
How can I be supported in this?
Peer-support is practiced through non-hierarchical relationships of mutual care and co- learning that allow us to grow, flourish and move through challenges. In these relationships our experiences are valued and used to help others through similar challenges.
To be an ally is to unite or form a connection with another person - a connection based on recognizing our common aspiration to contribute to a world free of oppression.
Allyship is almost exactly like mentorship, except allyship recognizes that learning happens in both directions. Being in allyship means being in a two-way circular dance that provides opportunities for us to experience both giving and receiving. Allies gently guide and nurture the growth of others at various stages in their development.
To be an Adult Ally is to unite intergenerationally with young people to develop non-hierarchical relationships in an effort to collectively bring about change.
Within YouthxYouth we see the role of an Adult Ally as someone who leverages their positionality to support young people in reclaiming their learning and in influencing and designing their education systems.
Community-care is care that recognises that we can't heal on our own, that we exist in relationship and that our wellbeing is tied with the wellbeing of others and the planet. It is relational and collectivist and founded on interdependence. Here’s a great piece to learn more.
A quote to reflect on: “When I becomes We, even illness becomes wellness.”
We define Glocal as the symbiotic intertwining of the global and local. Local, community-led efforts are supported and nurtured by a global community where learning is intercultural and crosses borders. Our Glocal approach ensures that the work on the ground is contextually rooted and led by local weavers.
In the YouthxYouth context, involves young people recognising that we are facing similar challenges globally, coming of age at a time of many complex and interconnected crises. It requires us to come together across borders to advocate for an education that gives us the tools to address the crises we find ourselves in.
How does the label of ‘activist’ fit into this?
Activism that is a proactive effort to catalyze the emergence and creation of more life-serving social systems, cultures, and technologies. As conscious activists we try to be aware of what we are activating in the world by the power of our attention and the stories we create and add to through our thoughts, words and actions.
Learn about some more of our language!
“In science and history, consilience is the principle that evidence from independent, unrelated sources can "converge" on strong conclusions. That is, when multiple sources of evidence are in agreement, the conclusion can be very strong even when none of the individual sources of evidence is significantly so on its own.”
Decolonisation is the theory and practice of unlearning, deconstructing, and disrupting colonial ideas, systems, and language. It explores ways of being and doing that embody ideas of embracing multiple ways of knowing, multiculturalism, indigenous epistemologies, cosmologies and indigenous sovereignty. Such ideas offer liberation for ourselves, each other, and the planet.
Spaces that cross generations and involve a diverse range of ages. For YouthxYouth an intergenerational space is one that truly involves people of all generations, young and old, and sees them as equally valuable.
The process of being and changing in ways that promote health and dynamic balance for oneself, others, and the planet. YouthxYouth practices regeneration through our attempts to work in regenerative ways, prioritize wellbeing and foster a world of our deepest longing, one in which we relate to one another with care, love & beauty.
One way to understand the concept of regeneration, is that compared to sustainability, it asks us "What can we give?" and how can we act in ways that transform how we receive, rather than just finding better ways to "take". E.g. regenerative agriculture asks us to be active participants in restoring health to an ecosystem.
A space, theoretical or physical, in which a community co-exists in. An ecosystem is created by relationships. YouthxYouth sees our community as a regenerative ecosystem, one in which ways of relating and being that center care and love are nurtured.
Within YouthxYouth we explore kinship as deep, often place-based, relationships that connect us: as individuals, communities, and the planet. These relationships are founded in mutual love, care and respect, allowing us to forgo rigid hierarchy and individualism.
"Kinship is a way of relating that asks us to go beyond extracting value from the 'other'. It is relationship for relationships sake, and for the sake of life itself. It is a form of relationship that acknowledges the deeper workings of reality by operating on the same principles as the very breath which keeps us alive: reciprocity, emergence, and sensuous awareness." - Advaya
Facilitation is the act of holding space for people, providing room for active listening, exploration, and sensemaking. In YouthxYouth we see facilitation as a sacred act and a way to practice prefiguration.
Interdependence describes the relationship between beings that depend on one another to exist (reciprocally dependent). YouthxYouth recognizes that our existences are interdependent with each other, broader human communities, our more-than-human family and Earth.
We see interdependence as explained by the Ubuntu Philosophy, I am because you are or I am because we are.
For a visual description and story see Indra's Net.
Self-care is consciously taking care of your own wellbeing, whether that be emotionally, spiritually, mentally, or physically. An important aspect of this is also acknowledging the interplay between how we can be there for others and be there for ourselves.
Liberation is the freeing of one's mind, body and heart from systems of oppression and the many ways of being and ideologies that they perpetuate.
Commons are resources/beings/places that are shared and cared for by a community supporting their daily lives rather than for profit. They are made up of three components: the thing held in Common, the community that relies on them, and the set of institutions created by that community to regulate them. Commons are not only physical but also can be cultural, intellectual or digital.
We see elevation as the process by which peoples or ideas are uplifted. Additionally through elevating the stories, experiences, and knowledge from those persecuted, we believe elevation to be a crucial tool in dismantling and disrupting oppression.
The process by which we reciprocally and collectively grow and transform. Within this space we recognize that deep connections and relationships play a large role in our collective development.
The mutually beneficial ways in which we relate and interact with one another, our communities, and the planet. In a world filled with rising crises and social fractures, symbiosis, a phenomenon often observed in the natural world, offers us a means of exploring connected and compassionate ways of living.
The process by which we overcome pain, trauma, and/or grief to enter a state of compassionate and wise strength. Our personal and collective healing journeys are key to creating new worlds and not furthering the wounded stories that hold this world up. YouthxYouth sees healing as having a big role in liberation and therefore as an essential purpose and tool in all the work we do.
Relationality is a term that explores the ways in which we relate to one another, our communities, and the planet. Relationality explores the crucial role relationships play in our existences and our complex interconnectedness. We see it as a way to overcome isolated ways of being that we see in society.
Relationality refers to connectedness, a view of the world that underlines how no person or thing exists in isolation, because existence necessarily means being ‘in relationship’.- Vanessa Winjgaarden
Community comes from the Latin "communis'' meaning the commons. Communities formed originally because people lived in the same places and shared the care for them (commons). Over time the commons were enclosed and removed from the care of communities. Charles Vogl now offers the definition of Community as ‘A group of people concerned with each other’s welfare’.
The YouthxYouth community is built up of youth activists and adult allies. We see community as a collective of beings connected by shared values and purpose, our community members are linked in their dedication to reimagining and transforming education.
The consciously well state of your emotional, physical, and mental beings. In our content, we focus on the connection between individual wellbeing and collective wellbeing. We explore wellbeing beyond feeling "happy" and see it as essential to being able to hold the many complexities of this time.
The process and practice of exchanging mutually beneficial resources in community. We strive to foster a community of reciprocity.
The way of life that centers mutual exchange and sharing amongst all beings, past, present and future, seen and unseen, and the Earth. - Reciprocity Project
Agency is the power and force we use when tackling the crisis and inequalities we collectively face. We see it as our capacity to create and enable meaningful change.
We use the term ‘show-up’ or ‘showing up’ to explain how we present ourselves to the world. At YouthxYouth we often talk about ‘how we show-up in the world’, this refers to how we are and how we act in the world, often implying that we are trying to do this with consciousness and reflection.
Synergies are the connections between multiple groups or beings. These collaborations are characterized by creating something that is greater than the sum of the parts. They are the places where we can be woven together most easily, in our work, interests and life purposes.
An education activist focuses their time and effort on transforming our education systems and ways of learning. They understand that education is a space of opportunity for systemic change. Education activism involves many themes, at YxY we are exploring how gender, technology, peace, wellbeing and mental health, climate and nature (and many more!) intersect with our education system and wider systems of the world.
A young person taking action in their own context while learning and growing with the global youth community of YxY. YxY activists are inspired by the YxY Approach and the process of weaving, they refine and explore what this means in their locality. YxY activists recognise that changes in our ways of learning affect all other areas of life and that there are many ways to affect change. At YxY we explore Activist Archetypes to allow young people to make sense of activism in a holistic way.
Young people who support us with co-designing YxY and who are responsible for hosting sessions in our programs like the Global Action Circle program and our Global Learning Festival.
YxY Allies/Peer Coaches
Adults and young people with extensive experience that support youth activists and their projects.
Help us to make sense of and grow our collective understanding of the world we deeply long for and the actions we can take to get there by suggesting terms you think should be added to our growing glossary! Email us your words at firstname.lastname@example.org