Three Power Programs
Be The Change is committed to combining our skills, resources, and change-making models towards impactful programs that meet community needs and tackles cultural change where it counts, in the hearts and minds of our youth.
Since 2005, BTCEA has been providing education that empowers individual and collective action towards an environmentally sustainable, thriving and just society. Influenced and informed by other game-changing organizations, we began providing activating information to community through symposia, events, an action guide and community circles with the goal of inspiring personal and community action on sustainability
In 2010, after hearing from many parents and educators that this work needed to be imbedded our schools, we launched into a new phase of our work by delivering our action-oriented transformative approach in schools.
SLS: Student Leadership in Sustainability
Our flagship education program for youth, called Student Leadership in Sustainability (SLS) started in 2011. Today, SLS continues to grow in impact, engaging and inspiring youth to personal, home, school and community action. In order to affect larger systemic change that benefits our environment, BTCEA continues to update SLS resources to reflect the ever-evolving issues our planet faces. In its fifth edition, the curriculum has been delivered to approximately 17,000 students by 400 teachers in roughly 90 schools across BC. With SLS’s action-oriented approach, students have taken over 100,000 actions, thereby reducing GHG emissions by over 500 tonnes and are shifting the cultures at their schools.
“I now know that every little action adds up to big consequences… I am inspired to make a difference and believe that I can” – Grade 7 student
Building upon BTCEA’s success with SLS, the Waste Watchers Initiative tackled local zero waste solutions through hands-on action-oriented education and project planning tools. Waste Watcher’s engaged students on local and global waste issues and supported them, and their teachers, to successfully develop and lead projects that improved their school’s waste practices. Over the program’s 3 year lifetime, 400 active student leaders have led campaigns to rethink waste in 19 schools and 3 pilot community centers. Furthermore, 26,000 students and teachers engaged in zero waste education, diverting 388 tonnes of waste from landfills.
“…we really appreciated the mountains of resources, hands-on support and willingness to go above and beyond to make a change in our school and the lives our students. … it was one of the most powerful experiences I have had as an educator!” Jacqueline Symons, Teacher
Climate Action Champions Initiative (CAChI)
Bringing together BTCEA’s impactful programming over the past decade, we are excited to launch our newest program, Climate Action Champions initiative (CAChI). Through various district, school, and community activities, such as school assemblies, workshops, and school-based projects, students dive deeper into Climate Change challenges and solutions and track and take informed meaningful actions. CAChI will empower youth to understand their role as leaders and change-makers, translating into small and large choices that reduce their school and personal ecological footprints. CAChI is designed to reach 20,000 students in 20 schools in Metro Vancouver, translating to a target GHG emission reduction of 320 tonnes, and BTCEA is just completing our pilot phase.
“This is a very meaningful workshop which introduces the importance of taking actions against climate change and what actions we should take. … It was very informative and inspirational. Thank you!” Grade 10 student