National Youth Leadership Initiative (NYLI)

National Youth Leadership Initiative ScheduleAdobe PDF

CADCA’s National Youth Leadership Initiative (NYLI) training equips young leaders with the essential knowledge and skills needed to get involved in youth-led civic change movements in their communities. It is a comprehensive training that takes young people and their adult advisors through a process designed to increase meaningful involvement in planning and carrying out strategic and action plans in local communities. Those trained by the NYLI are making remarkable contributions to the prevention movement as evidenced by:

  • Youth taking on decision-making positions in coalitions/local organizations
  • Youth being supported and actively involved in youth-led civic engagement
  • Local organizations becoming more responsive to youth needs and inclusion in community problem solving
  • Systems changes that are required to impact social consequences are taking place
  • Identified community problems are declining


CADCA offers both NYLI Courses at the Mid-Year Training Institute; the NYLI Key Essentials (Level I) and the NYLI Advanced (Level II).  In order to participate in the Advanced Course, there are prerequisites that must be met.  See below for more details.

Meet the NYLI Training Team 

NYLI Key Essentials

First timer? The NYLI Key Essentials course will give you the foundational knowledge and skills to become “change agents” within your community while building youth and adult partnerships. In addition to learning the fundamentals, participants are encouraged to take action in their local community through “Youth-In-Action” Projects.

Participants will:

  • Become more engaged Youth Leaders
  • Learn and apply the Strategic Prevention Framework process
  • Learn and apply components of a Community Assessment
  • Develop a Problem Statement
  • Conduct a Problem Analysis
  • Create a Logic Model
  • Use 7 Strategies for Community Change to select interventions for “Youth- In-Action” Projects


NYLI Advanced

The NYLI Advanced course was designed to provide youth who completed the NYLI Key Essentials an opportunity to take their community problem solving skills to the next level. Going deeper, a primary focus will be placed on developing, documenting and implementing comprehensive “Youth-In-Action” Projects designed to cultivate Youth Advocates for whatever the cause!

Participants will:

  • Identify Evidenced-based Practices to impact their communities’ local conditions
  • Develop a Logic Model with Interventions
  • Develop and document a Comprehensive Intervention for local “Youth in Action” Projects
  • Map Performance Measures to their logic models
  • Develop an effective Advocacy Campaign for policy change
  • Develop a Strategic and Action Plan to support implementation of their youth-led projects
  • Demonstrate Key Leadership Skills via critical thinking applications and oral presentations


NYLI Advanced Prerequisites

At least 1/3 of your team (including adult advisor) must have previously completed a NYLI Training
Teams are required to submit their work from NYLI Key Essentials: Coalition's Community Assessment, NYLI Logic Model and NYLI Youth In Action Plan by July 8th

Youth Stuff!

  • Monday, July 21st Youth Meet Up and Open Mic - Get to know teens from across the country with a shared interest of drug abuse prevention. Then, let loose on the Mic and give it what you got. Bring your talent to the stage!
  • Hump Day, July 23rd Youth Pool Splash - You could be anywhere, but you're in Orlando so... ge in some Sun, Sandals, & Swimsuits



Attire: Comfortable, yet appropriate. Casual or business casual is fine. We stress that all attire be tasteful.
This means nothing too tight, short, baggy, or revealing. This applies to all CADCA events.

What to bring: It may be helpful to bring any statistical data from your community the group has researched that may facilitate application work (not required). Advanced Only: Bring a copy of your Community Assessment, Logic Model, an updated NYLI Logic Model and a laptop computer. Workbooks will be provided for both courses.

Adult Participation: An adult advisor is required to participate with youth during the course; however, adults are not required to attend the Youth Meet & Greet or Youth Dance. CADCA releases all liability and does not guarantee that there will be adult supervision at all times during these events.

Parent Consent Forms: The consents forms acts as a permission for attendance, medical treatment, a general release of liability and photography/video waiver for all minors in attendance. Forms of all youth attending are required prior to arriving at the training event. Onsite registrants must submit a parent consent form at the time of registration. If the parent of the youth is in attendance, a signed form is still required. Click here to download the parent consent form.

Submit All Info to: Jasmine Carrasco, Youth Programs Manager at