What if you could connect with other youth-led and youth-serving organizations out there who are passionate about the same cause? What if you could access additional knowledge, skills, or funding to advocate for youth in your community? Or what if you could share what you’ve learned with important sector leaders? Could you grow your impact? Could you create more sustainable change?
This June, the USAID-funded Youth Excel program is launching a Global Youth Excel Network Map on Pando to do just that. The map, in combination with feedback and dialogue, will help youth-led and youth-serving groups, organizations, and institutions identify important partners, share and exchange new and critical information, and meaningfully collaborate for inclusive youth development around the world!
About the Global Youth Excel Network Map
The Youth Excel program aims to support young leaders and youth-led organizations to use research and evidence to improve inclusive youth programming, build youth networking skills, and generate dialogue between young people and adult decision-makers to shape better policies, programs, and development agendas.
Strong, equitable relationships and networks are key to achieving this mission. That’s why Youth Excel is launching the Global Youth Excel Network Map to:
- Openly talk about and begin to address equity issues among local youth-led organizations from the Global South and international youth-serving NGOs and institutions from the Global North;
- Facilitate or strengthen collaboration around Policy and Practice, Youth Safety, Protection & Inclusion, and other important topics;
- Support youth-led and youth-serving organizations to understand their position within the Youth Excel ecosystem and identify gaps;
- Enable youth-led and youth-serving organizations to discover skills and expertise that others bring to inclusive youth development; and more!
What’s a network map?
It sounds complicated, but a network map is really just a bunch of dots (representing real individuals or organizations) connected by lines (representing real connections and relationships). We’ve been using network maps for years to understand how individuals, organizations, and institutions work together to achieve a common goal. For example, the #ShiftThePower movement uses the Pathways to Power map to connect activists around the world with a shared advocacy agenda.
How does it work?
To get started, participants:
- Receive an email invitation from firstname.lastname@example.org to create an account;
- Share information about their organization’s expertise (e.g. Advocacy, Education, Youth Leadership, etc.), location, and more in the Organization Profile;
- Input what groups, organizations, or institutions they go to for information, support, or resources about relevant topics (ie. Research, Data Collection & MEL) in the Relationship Manager; and
- Send email invitations to trusted partners to join the network map.
Using the information shared by participants, Pando automatically generates a network map that visualizes the organizations and relationships within the Youth Excel community. Participants can use search tools and data filters to identify other actors for collaboration.
The Youth Excel consortium will launch the Global Youth Excel Network Map in a virtual event on June 16th. Consortium members will be invited to create accounts, input organization and relationship data, and begin to interpret the emerging network map in real time.
Following the launch event, we’ll analyze the map, in combination with feedback survey results, using the Pando Localization Learning Systems (LLS) to better understand equity within the current Youth Excel community across four themes: Leadership, Connectivity, Mutuality, and Finance. This data will be shared back with consortium members as part of a July workshop to identify challenges and co-create solutions.
Members of the Youth Excel community will be invited to update their relationships every six months throughout the course of the program to capture ways that the community is evolving over time and facilitate ongoing learning conversations about the network’s strengths and needs. Down the road, analysis of the Global Youth Excel Network Map will be combined with that of network maps of Youth Excel’s place and issue-based collaborative networks (ICONs) in countries such as Kenya and Guatemala to gain a better picture of both local and global Youth Excel networks.
Is my data safe?
By participating in the Global Youth Excel Network Map, you are sharing your data with your peers who have been invited to participate in this specific mapping initiative to support Youth Excel. The relationship data you enter in your relationship manager and organizational profile will be visible to other members of the map. You will also be able to see the data of other users who are part of this map. Data is not visible to anyone who has not been invited to join.
Pando aims to create greater transparency of relationships between organizations and actors exchanging information, ideas and support across a range of areas. Sharing data on your organization, the work you are doing and who you are working and collaborating with helps to enhance the learning opportunities and discovery for everyone involved in that relationship map.