Rallies Canadians to Take International Youth Day Challenge

    National charity offers suggestions for supporting young Canadians.

    TORONTO, Aug. 11 /CNW/ - This Wednesday, August 12, marks UN
International Youth Day, a great opportunity to promote the importance of
building leadership and life skills in our youth. is using the day to
kick-off its month-long International Youth Day Challenge - asking Canadians
to make a pledge, take action, and help support Canada's youth, many of whom
are lacking the supports required to reach their full potential.
    According to the recent UN Report Card on Child Well-Being, young
Canadians rank in the bottom third of youth in 21 OECD countries for family
and peer relationships, behaviour and risks, and subjective well-being (how
kids feel about themselves). These findings underscore the need to provide
youth with caring adult role models and practical tools that build the
foundation for healthy, productive lives.
    "Canada's young people are our future. The responsibility to develop the
skills and self-confidence they need to be tomorrow's leaders must be shared
by caregivers, schools, government, corporate Canada, and social development
organizations," explains Janet King, President and Founder, "We're
asking Canadians across the country to celebrate International Youth Day by
playing a role in making youth development a priority and in so doing, help
create the future we want for our kids and for our country." offers the following suggestions on how you can take action and
make a difference in the lives of young Canadians, on International Youth Day,
or any day of the year. Share your plans to support youth development with - whether it impacts kids in your own life, in your community, or
across the country - by September 10, 2009, and your name, city and pledge
will be posted on the website. Your pledge to take action may inspire
someone else to do the same. Visit for more

    Connect with a Kid in your Life. When caring adults spend time with
youth, it allows young people to experience the support, care and guidance
that help protect them from negative behaviours and prevent them from making
the wrong choices. Strike up a conversation in your car or in a line-up, or
simply turn off the TV and talk. Commit to eating dinner as a family at least
once a week. To start the conversation, visit for expert advice and tips on boosting
optimism, building resilience, and developing leadership and life skills in
    For seven additional suggestions, visit

    About is Canada's national charity for youth leadership. For over a
decade, we've been coaching kids to make positive choices by building
self-confidence, leadership abilities, and life-success skills through free,
in-school, afterschool programs. Led by fully trained, volunteer
coach-mentors, the educator-endorsed program focuses on goal setting,
effective communications, and other valuable skills that last a lifetime. For
more information, visit

For further information:

For further information: Media Contact: Karen Benner,, (416)

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