ROI Rural Change Makers: What You Need to Know


BEGINS JUNE 15, 2020

IMPORTANT NOTE: This Rural Change Makers course is one component of a pilot program that is being provided for young adults age 18-29 by the Rural Ontario Institute. Successful applicants are fully subsidized as the result of generous contributions by the Government of Ontario, the Campus for Communities of the Futures and other sponsors. For more information about the full project contact Vicki Dickson at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. 


The ROI Rural Change Makers course provides training and certification for young adults age 18-29 who want to make a difference by serving in a formal or informal community leadership role in their rural or remote community. The overall program is designed to "grow the capacity of young adults to serve as changemakers able to strengthen rural community development by providing leadership opportunities through sustainable, experiential learning". Ultimately the program will prepare young adults to mobilize action in their community, structured around an identified priority in their region. The training provided within this course component is suitable regardless of the background and interest of participants e.g. health, social services, economic development, education, justice, libraries, elected officials, recreation, agricultural, arts, co-operatives, environment, faith communities etc. While other self-selected options for more informal learning will be provided for participants as upcoming separate components, this course will provide the fundamental skills, knowledge, and tools that will position young adults for success as future-focused community leaders.  It will be especially relevant for those who are working with other stakeholders to address complex issues and are committed to facilitating the social innovation and transformation needed for their organizations and communities. 

Upon completion of this certificate, participants will be better able to:


  • serve as a catalyst for positive community change and growth;
  • engage citizens and partner stakeholders by applying a community development approach, and;
  • demonstrate personal growth as a community leader. 



The Campus for Communities of the Future is appreciative of the direction and knowledge provided by ROI (Rural Ontario Institute) in terms of helping to develop this course. Their understanding of the issues and opportuniies faced by their varied stakeholders in rural and remote communities has proven invaluable. It should also be noted that for those seeking to further their training as a community building, this course would be considered as the equivalent of the Campus for Communities of the Future Phase 1 course entitled Community Building Fundamentals. 

Participant Commitment :

  • live webinars are scheduled for each of the 7 modules (1.5 hours each) and run for 7 consecutive weeks
  • in some cases the learning is "flipped" so the homework e.g. background reading, viewing a video, completing an assignment etc. is done before the webinar to ensure greater interaction and deeper richer learning
  • participation in all of the webinars is ideal however, participants will also have access to each webinar recording and can review it at their convenience 
  • learning is reinforced through the use of testing and certification so each module will also have either a background reading and quiz OR a practical assignment related to your community project. This combination of quizzes and assignments requires additional time. The course is estimated to require 3-5 hours of your time per module.  




Webinar Date

Module Description



June 15, 2020

Webinar 6:00 PM EST

There is a growing awareness of the importance of community building as a key role for today's future-focused leaders. It will be especially important in addressing complex issues and in supporting the innovation, relevancy, and sustainability that is essential for both quality of life and economic development in rural communities. 






June 22, 2020

Webinar 6:00 PM EST


We live in an era of unprecedented transformation. And, while there’s no doubt there is much to be learned from rural communities, we still need to be asking how can  we do more to partner, collaborate, and innovate in response to the complex issues and challenges in our communities? 



June 29, 2020

Webinar 6:00 PM EST


Communities get better when their leaders get better. While there is much to celebrate in rural communities, there are also challenges that will require the collective effort of many to resolve. An effective Change Maker will be one who encourages and coaches everyone to lead. The practical tools and resources presented in this module will help you learn more about your own leadership strengths while learning about tools that can be used to facilitate the leadership development of others in your community and develop a strong team.

RCB104 Outcome-Focused Leadership: It's About the WHY

July 6, 2020

Webinar 6:00 PM EST



What if there were a way you could (1) communicate powerful messages about ideas and projects; (2) motivate staff and volunteers; (3) improve performance; and (4) encourage innovation and accountability? Making outcome leadership a priority is the solution and a key strategy for all of the above issues. This module will demonstrate that while outcomes are sometimes challenging to articulate, ultimately they make everything easier.



July 13, 2020

Webinar 6:00 PM EST


The most effective community leaders will be those who can assess their progress toward established priorities as well as their impact on the broader community good. Because of this, community builders will always need to support the implementation of evaluation as it will bring forward learnings, stories, and reasons for celebrating as well as new outcomes and strategies for moving forward. 




July 20, 2020

Webinar 6:00 PM EST

Being a Change Maker will always involve working with and engaging citizen volunteers This module will share key knowledge, resources, and tools that can be used to recruit and engage volunteers in community-led initiatives. 



July 27, 2020

Webinar 6:00 PM EST

Successful community builders will be those who understand the importance of engaging others to help develop a plan that will inspire and motivate action. Typically this plan needs to include a vision, values, outcomes, and goals and how they are going to be achieved. Despite the importance of planning, it is often neglected or overridden by our desire and impatience to get things moving. However, planning is critical if we are to face complex issues and generate resources for programs, services and initiatives.

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