Youth as Agents of Behavioural Change

Youth as Agents of Behavioural Change (YABC) is the IFRC’s long-standing programme that helps people around the world promote a culture of non-violence and peace in their communities.

Discrimination, exclusion and violence are all humanitarian challenges that greatly impact communities worldwide. But with the right support, people can be a powerful force for change and lead their peers and communities in tackling these issues.

We created YABC in 2008 with and for youth from National Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies around the world. The project teaches both young people and adults how to harness their own power, take on ethical leadership roles and inspire positive transformations in mindsets, attitudes and behaviours.

How does it work?

YABC is all about changing minds and behaviours by touching hearts.

It starts by fostering self-awareness, self-reflection and inner change so that participants can become role models and encourage others to also act with respect, equality, open dialogue and inclusion.

This then helps them engage in lifelong self-learning and self-improvement, in which flaws or failures are viewed as opportunities to grow, learn humility and become more resilient.

Through the programme, participants develop their understanding of different societal issues—such as discrimination, exclusion, gender and violence. They also learn valuable social and emotional life skills—such as empathy, critical thinking, non-violent communication and negotiation.

YABC uses non-formal peer education techniques such as games, role plays, simulation and visualization exercises, storytelling and arts. Through these activities, participants are encouraged to step out of their comfort zone, working together to learn and explore solutions to problems—all in a safe and supportive learning environment.

YABC Toolkit

The YABC toolkit includes 56 educational activities that are split by different thematic issues and socio-emotional life skills.

Each topical section comprises a concept paper and corresponding lesson plans. The toolkit also includes a peer educator manual, community engagement guidelines, and psychosocial support guidelines for toolkit users.

You can read and download an introduction to the toolkit below. People interested in using the YABC toolkit are strongly encouraged to first complete a YABC peer educator training.

To request the full YABC toolkit, to enquire about YABC peer educator training, or for general enquiries about the YABC programme, please email yabc.support@ifrc.org

Watch: Introduction to the YABC toolkit