Leadership Victoria's flagship program is based on a blend of theory and experience in the community. We bring together learners from diverse backgrounds, who work in business, non-profit, academic and government environments, and put you to work in collaborative teams. Each aspect of the program is considered integral to the structure of learning, so we consider all of these components to be required for graduation.
Leadership Orientation Sessions
Meet some of your classmates and the facilitators/coaches who will guide your Community Leadership Development experience! We explore what it means to have a "healthy community" and what you're most passionate about. At this session, we provide you with the resources and info you need to prepare for the year ahead.
Leadership Launch Retreat
Each year in September, the Community Leadership Development Program launches with an engaging three-day residential retreat at the Cowichan Lake Outdoor Education & Conference Centre.
it gives participants the opportunity to:
- further understand the purpose and objectives of the program
- understand and appreciate the learning model for the program
- develop team-building skills
- appreciate different leadership styles and the different paths towards community leadership
- begin their exploration of the community and its diverse challenges and issues.
Perhaps most important, it is in the course of the Leadership Launch Weekend that you'll begin an exploration of your own leadership self-knowledge and begin to take stock of your level of skill in various leadership competencies. The leader you are going to become begins to take shape here.
At the Leadership Retreat, you'll have an opportunity to get to know your fellow participants. Ultimately, leadership is about teamwork and collaboration. The Launch Weekend sets the environment and the activities to build on this important dynamic, and to ensure everyone is positioned for success over the following months.
It's also a great deal of fun!
Community Learning Days
Over the period of October to May the program unfolds in a series of day-long learning sessions called Community Learning Days. In each Community Learning Day we focus on a particular aspect of the community in Victoria, as well as on the fundamental skills of community leadership.
A variety of guest speakers and local leaders participate in Community Learning Days, voluntarily sharing their wealth of knowledge, insights, skills, and experience with learners. These Community Learning Days are held in a variety of locations around Greater Victoria, such as municipal halls, universities & community centers, reflecting the diversity of our community.
During Community Learning Days, you'll gain knowledge and build skills in support of the four pillars of Community Leadership, which you'll then put to work in your Community Action Project.
Each year, one or two of our Community Learning Days are opened to other members of the community (by invitation), so that we can share our learning experience as well as hear the input and perspectives of a wider range of participants.
Community Action Projects
Expand your learning by putting your new skills into action! Learners are put into teams of 5-6 people, matched with a team coach who acts as their liaison with Leadership Victoria and supports the team's process and development.
Each team develops a Community Action Project, which serves as a "learning lab" for leadership development as well as delivering a direct benefit to the community. Teams partner with host organizations or agencies, to develop and deliver some kind of community project that will have a present-day impact and future benefits through the host organization.
Community Action Project teams meet regularly throughout the program, on a schedule set up by each team at a mutually convenient time. Most teams meet weekly, and then have additional commitments to deliver their projects in the spring.
Leadership Victoria offers a unique mentorship program that allows each individual an opportunity to explore how they might apply what they are learning in the Leadership Victoria program to their own life. Mentors include a range of senior community leaders who bring a remarkable combination of experience and insight to the table. Participants are matched with personal mentors who act as their confidential resource for growth and development.
Community Immersion Experience
To deepen their understanding of community issues, each participant chooses a self-directed experience and reflects upon its personal impact. This experience involves “Ride Alongs” with Saanich Police units, or a day of job-shadowing front-line personnel in community-serving agencies.
Resource Packages & Pre-Session Learning
While this is not an academic program requiring great deals of study and paper-writing, we do share resources with learners to help deepen your understanding of leadership concepts and community issues. You can expect to do 1-2 hours of preparation each month in preparation for Community Learning Days. This time is spent reading short articles or watching online videos, so you can discuss the ideas and put them into practice when you come together with your classmates.
We encourage all participants to set up a group of colleagues in their workplace or a community organization where you volunteer, and "share out" or report to this group monthly or quarterly. By sharing your learning about leadership, you'll solidify the concepts for yourself and spread the positive impact of your experience!