Educating K-12 students to lead
Smart, fun activities connect classroom learning with hands-on experiences to build civic literacy and leadership from an early age.
Launched in 1992 by former Charlotte Observer publisher Rolfe Neill and other civic leaders, GenerationNation – until December 2011, named Kids Voting Mecklenburg – was initially an annual event focused on Election Day. Now, GenerationNation is a nonprofit (501c3) organization with a new programming model to more comprehensively educate and engage young citizens and leaders and address the needs of students, schools, and the community.
Why does it matter?
Today's students will become the leaders of our schools, businesses, communities, and nation. What and how they learn now matters.
Unfortunately, due to education trends and learning opportunity gaps, students - especially those who are disadvantaged - lack opportunities for civic education and to develop critical leadership skills. Across all demographics, students know least about local and state government, civic issues, and how businesses and public policy intersect.
Through GenerationNation, students prepare for college, career and civic life. We all benefit when students:
- Grow as confident citizens who can read and analyze information, think critically, communicate, collaborate, lead, solve problems, and make decisions.
- Understand how their governments and communities work.
- Gain essential knowledge for academic success, including graduation requirements Civics & Economics and American History.
- Develop lifelong civic leadership.
Giving Charlotte's students an advantage
GenerationNation builds civic literacy and leadership from an early age through programs including K-12 civic education, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Youth Council, Youth Civics, Kids Voting, Youth Voice, and other initiatives.
- Directly engages students in hands-on civics and leadership experiences to narrow learning opportunity gaps and build critical civic literacy and leadership knowledge, interest, and skills.
- 35,000+ students engaged in 2013-14 learning opportunities including the youth council and mock election, with 9,500+ contact hours
- 100% of student participants learn about and engage in local government and community issues
- In the classroom, GenerationNation helps K-12 teachers to easily and effectively integrate civic literacy into the classroom at 170+ public, charter, independent, and religious schools, through 100+ lessons and tools aligned to core subjects, Common Core, and NC standards.
How can you and your organization help to give students the advantage of civic literacy and leadership?
We’re educating students and building leaders – and there’s still work to be done. Your financial and volunteer investment provides current programs, builds capacity and fuels growth to meet the needs of schools, students and the Charlotte area.
- Connect your school or organization.
- Volunteer. Donate your time to help us to educate students and build young civic leaders, join a committee or serve on the Board. Over 500 volunteers contribute 5,000 hours annually.
- Contribute critical financial or in-kind resources. GenerationNation is a nonprofit (501c3) organization funded through grants, corporate contributions, sponsorships, individual gifts, and in-kind donations. Over 90% of resources support programming. GenerationNation is not funded by a state or national organization, by the United Way, or by the Arts and Science Council.