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[Closed] Apply now to join the Young Leaders Development Programme! Deadline August 8th, 2019.

July 15th, 2019 Posted by News, YLDP No Comment yet

Thank you for your interest in the YLDP. Applications are now closed.


Are you…

  • approx. 18-35 years old;
  • living in Scotland; and
  • interested in tackling climate change? 

Do you have…

  • a desire to develop your leadership skills;
  • a willingness to inspire others; and
  • personal drive and energy?

Introducing: 2050 Climate Group’s Young Leaders Development Programme

We need leaders to make Scotland’s sustainable future a reality. Leadership is all about influence. You don’t need to be a chief executive or MSP to have an impact on this world. The aim of the Young Leaders Development Programme (YLDP) is to give young people the leadership skills and climate change knowledge they need to take action on climate change. Now in its fourth year, we are looking for people like YOU to join the programme. The programme will kick off in September 2019 and run until April 2020 and will consist of six days of training and workshops spread over this period. Each event will be held on a Saturday in a central location. 

As a Young Leader you will:

  • Receive free leadership training from Scotland’s foremost experts;
  • Build knowledge of climate change issues and solutions in day-to-day life, business and politics;
  • Improve your communication and influencing skills;
  • Increase your confidence;
  • Build your CV with skills and experience;
  • Be part of a growing network of a diverse range of young people; and
  • Be able to inspire others to actively contribute towards taking action on climate change.

Programme structure

We believe that in order to help lead the way to a successful, sustainable future, there are three spheres of influence that must be addressed: personal, professional and political.








The six modules of the YLDP are split into three pairs to cover the three spheres of influence above (personal, professional and political). Each pair of modules has a ‘Climate Change’ module and a ‘Leadership’ module. We aim to provide you with the climate change knowledge surrounding each of the spheres of influence and then develop your leadership skills to help you take action on climate change in each of the three spheres.

Throughout the programme, there will be a focus on developing your own actions, for example persuading your mum to take the bus more, getting your local supermarket to stock more low carbon food or getting your local council to build a heat network!

The Leaders Network

On successful completion of the programme, you will have the opportunity to join our network of Young Leaders who have completed previous programmes. This is a space for networking, collaboration and taking action and will be supported by training and development opportunities.

Dates for your diary

We expect Young Leaders to commit to attending the training sessions set out below. Don’t worry – we know life sometimes gets in the way – but if you already know that you won’t be able to attend half of these dates then it might be best to wait and apply next year! 

All events will take place in central Scotland in locations with good public transport links.

Theme Event Date
Induction Thursday 5th September 2019 (evening)
Personal Climate Change Saturday 28 September 2019
Leadership Saturday 26 October 2019
Professional  Climate Change Saturday 23 November 2019
Leadership Saturday 25 January 2020
Political Climate Change Saturday 29 February 2020
Leadership Saturday 28 March 2020 

How to apply

We are pleased to offer this programme at no financial cost to participants, other than travel to each of the events (and even that we can help with – see below).

To apply, fill out this application form by 8th August @ 5pm to be in with a chance of a place on this exciting programme! If you have any questions, check the FAQs below or drop us an email at

If you have specific requirements or need alternative arrangements to this application form please contact 2050 Climate Group to discuss this further. 

Participation fund

We do not want anyone to miss out on participating in the programme simply because they can’t afford it. We therefore have some funding available that you can apply for to help cover travel costs if you make it onto the programme. We would also be happy to discuss other ways to support you if you have any other barriers to participation.


Q: What if I can’t make all the dates?

A: It might be worth considering waiting for next year’s programme. That way someone who can make all the events can join the programme this year. To get the most out of the YLDP, it is important that you can commit to attending as much of the programme as possible. Delivering the YLDP also requires significant resources, including financial costs and the time of our volunteers, staff and contributors.  It is therefore really important that the chosen applicants attend our events if the programme is going to be a success!  

Q: How will you decide who gets onto the programme?

A: We had over 330 applications for just 130 spaces last year, and we expect this year to be competitive again. We will select applicants based on the answers in their application. We are not necessarily looking for those who already know the most about climate change or who are already working in a related sector, in fact we welcome those who know very little about climate change. Our primary aim is to get a good mix of people from a range of backgrounds and differing levels of climate change knowledge. What is critical, however, is that you have a commitment to the programme, a willingness to learn and a desire to apply what you have learned by taking action. Anyone who is unsuccessful in making it onto the programme is welcome to join the three “climate change” modules, which will be open to the general public. Or you can always apply again next year. There are other ways to engage with 2050 Climate Group as well – we’ll let you know in due course.

Q: What if I live in the Hebrides / [insert far-flung Scottish place here]?

A: Climate change won’t just affect the central belt, so we would love for you to apply. Of course, you’ll need to consider if you can make it to the central belt for Saturday morning for each event. Remember, we may be able to help with your travel costs if that’s an issue.

Q: Do I already need to be a climate change guru to apply?

A: No. We are looking for a diverse range of people; all we expect is a commitment to learn and to take action.

Q: Is this all about environmental stuff?

A: Whilst the environment is massively important, climate change is relevant to all facets of society. Expect to hear about energy generation, community campaigns, infrastructure, farming, running a business and international treaties! A key part of our work is to reach a wider audience, so that is our aim for the programme.

Q: Do I need to live in Scotland to apply?

Due to our funding requirements, applicants must be living in Scotland and have a Scottish postcode to apply.

Q: Do I need to be in a position of leadership to apply?

A: A traditional image of a leader would be a politician or CEO of a business. However, we think a leader is someone who influences others and we expect people from all walks of life to be able to do that, whether you’re a farmer, doctor or youth worker (to name but a few!). The YLDP will give you all the leadership skills you need to make a change, regardless of who you are or what you do.

Herald News: Young people unite for a green future

March 22nd, 2019 Posted by News No Comment yet

News taken from Herald Scotland article 21 March 2019

When faced with global challenges such as climate change, it is essential that everyone’s voice is heard and that collective action is taken now to increase our chances of creating a sustainable future. The 2050 Climate Group is a charity with this message at its heart. It aims to engage, educate and empower Scotland’s young people to take action against climate change. It is a youthrun and primarily volunteer-led organisation with a team of over 60 volunteers across Scotland.

The flagship initiative is the Young Leaders Development Programme (YLDP), a free educational course that runs over a year and consists of several events that aim to enhance climate change knowledge and leadership skills, focusing on personal, professional and political spheres of influence. The events consist of a range of activities, including presentations, workshops, panel discussions and debates, and are delivered by volunteers and expert external speakers. Participants in the programme also set actions to take on climate change and the 2050 Climate Group supports them to realise these ambitions. The charity’s programme is now approaching the end of its third year of delivering the programme and we have seen many inspiring actions achieved throughout this time across a variety of areas, from food to energy to transport.

One of the current Young Leaders, Kirstin McEwan, explains: “When I joined the YLDP, I hoped to learn more about how to get involved in climate action but the programme turned out to be broader than I ever thought, exploring so many ways that we can influence the status quo…

I’ve tackled topics on everything from the impact of diet to implementing sustainable workplace practices.”

What makes the group unique, she goes on to say, is that it isn’t an elite group of climate scientists or highly read environmental students. “The YLDP is open to people from all walks of life and, while there is a focus on youth, there is a cross-generational feel.

“A mix of backgrounds has also brought a wealth of diverse input from my fellow YLDP members and through workshops, group actions and speaker discussion sessions, I’ve explored points of view I would never have considered and tackled shortcomings in my own goals to live a more climate-friendly lifestyle.”

The latest event, based in Stirling, focused on climate change as a political issue. The session was held on the day following the Youth Strike for Climate event which highlighted that, now more than ever, young voices can have an impact. The day centred on how individuals can influence political processes and give voice to climate action in so many ways.

For Kirstin, the defining moment of the event was listening to Promise Matatiyo of Malawi’s Young Climate Leaders who was visiting Scotland as part of a 2050 Climate Group exchange. Promise stressed that as the task of tacking climate change got harder, the amount of cooperation required became greater. “We must support each other in order to survive, and if the 2050 Climate Group’s YLDP has shown me anything, it’s that Scotland’s young people need to lead in this process,” Kirstin continued.

Today’s young people are crucial to building a fairer, more sustainable future as they will become the decision makers of the future. The 2050 Climate Group will continue to work with Scotland’s young people to help them develop and ensure they are represented.

We will soon be accepting applications for volunteers between the ages of 18 and 35 to join the 2050 team.

How can young people have a positive impact in your organisation?

October 16th, 2018 Posted by Blogs No Comment yet

It’s Green GB week! Regardless of the debate around how well the UK seems to be doing on the ‘Green’ front (fracking, anyone?), and off the back of our latest event for the Young Leaders Development Programme, ‘Climate Change: Professional’, we thought we’d share some inspiring tales of young people making positive changes in their organisations. Both of these case studies feature individuals who have been through our Young Leaders Development Program (YLDP) which takes on 100+ young people (aged 18-35) every year and runs a series of events that aim to educate, engage and empower them into taking action on climate change. To read more about the YLDP, click here.

The recent IPCC Special Report on 1.5 degrees global warming and our previous blog post stressed that urgent action on climate change is needed on every level. These examples show how young people’s individual actions have catalysed change in their organisations. Flip this around, and they also show the benefits business can reap by making space for young people (in fact, all employees!) to have a voice on issues that go beyond their job description. Whether you are an early career professional or executive business manager, prepare to learn and be inspired…

Kim Cooper: Making changes in the workplace

Young Leader Kim Cooper works in a microbiology lab for Scientific Services at Scottish Water and was concerned by the large amount of consumables and energy her lab uses for sterility, business continuity, and regulatory requirements.

Inspired after attending her first YLDP module, and with the help of management and her colleagues, Kim put together a workshop for employees, promoting and raising awareness about her team’s energy usage and waste production. Despite having to meet various regulatory requirements, the workshop discussed methods which Scientific Services can use and how they can procure consumables more sustainably – for example using steel loops instead of plastic, disposable ones.
The workshop was well attended by staff and management, and was praised by the Chief Scientist, Kim’s lab manager and team leader. This is a great example of a young person reaching out to her colleagues and peers to achieve measurable change in her workplace.
Kim has also developed ocean-themed posters for the microbiology wing on marine debris, ocean acidification and climate change. Her next step is to give a talk to her department on waste management, which, she states, is the main reason she applied to take part in the YLDP. Kim believes that long-term behaviour change is the biggest stumbling block in influencing her lab. 2050 Climate Group therefore paired Kim with an external mentor, Alex Hillam, who has a working knowledge of behaviour-change initiatives. Kim’s action is a perfect example of an ambitious determination to influence her peers, while being open to the wisdom and experience of those at different stages in their careers.

Rebecca Harding: ‘Lunch and Learn’

“Lunch and Learns” are established lunchtime events at Scottish Water. They are a short, informal opportunities to share knowledge and experience on certain topics. Young Leader Rebecca Harding had the idea to share learning from the YLDP in these sessions, and connected with other Scottish Water employees on the programme to organise some informal sharing sessions.
At each session, two Young Leaders gave a presentation or set up an activity and took questions at the end. Rebecca and her fellow Young Leaders found interest to be high, with lots of questions around personal action that individuals can take, as well as about disruptive businesses who are going ‘all out’ to reduce their impacts on the environment.
These sessions are a great method of reaching out to less informed or engaged colleagues on climate change issues. For pitching similar sharing sessions at your place of work or study, Rebecca recommends pitching these to your boss as great opportunities for continued professional development. She recommends choosing an angle and selling point, promoting the lunches through a development network or other internal communications, and asking for catering to be provided. Young Leader Kerry Relf, who ran a Lunch and Learn with her colleague Alex, said:

“I think the ‘Lunch and Learn’ Alex and I presented made people think about the impact of their own personal carbon footprint on the Earth. We had feedback, which suggested that the audience was surprised to see how small changes could make a difference. Overall many small changes makes a big impact. The ‘Lunch and Learn’ was easy to organise and run.”

From an organisational point of view, this is a fantastic way of promoting shared learning between your teams, getting employees engaged and encouraging communication on bigger issues than the day-to-day.

On that note, what better week than #GreenGB Week to start taking steps to ensure all voices in your organisation are engaged and heard?