We Help Leaders Find the Power to Make Change

Since launching in 2015:

Supporting people taking action
For healthy immigrants families

I recommend this training to everyone who wants to take action to speak out against the injustice they are facing.

~ Rebiya, Newcomer Women’s Services

Newcomer Women Services
Rwandan Canadian Healing Centre
Toronto Ward Museum

Supporting people taking action
For empowered workers

With Olivia’s energy and expertise, we trained and launched teams of early childhood educators who have in turn engaged thousands of childcare workers and reached tens of thousands of parents and voters.

~ Lyndsay Macdonald, Early Childhood Educator

Association of Early Childhood Educators Ontario

Supporting people taking action
For thriving Indigenous communities

I learned so much, and I will utilize my newly acquired knowledge to create change in my home community.

~ Andrew, Aboriginal Health Initiative

Inuvialuit Regional Corporation
We Matter

Supporting people taking action
For a strong democracy

A great experience to be able to engage in thoughtful, skill-building training and get to hear the inspiring stories of badass change leaders.

~ Emily, Young Women’s Leadership Network

Fair Vote Canada
Toronto Youth Cabinet
Young Women's Leadership Network
Key moments in Canadian LGBTQ+ history: the Pussy Palace Bathhouse raids of 2000

Pride Month can be a vital opportunity to remember and share the key moments in Canadian LGBTQ+ history. This Pride, we look back on the Pussy Palace Bathhouse raids of 2000, the response of community organizers, and the larger impact on the fight for LGBTQ+ rights in Canada.

How to Make the Change You Want, Post-Election

How do we create the change we want in post-election Ontario? Click here for the answer!

Nominations Open for the 2022 Layton Legacy Activism Award

The Layton Legacy initiative is delighted to open nominations for the 2022 Jack Layton Activism Award!

Upcoming Courses and Events

Layton Activism Award Celebration!

Layton Activism Award Celebration!

Jack Layton was a joyful and passionate activist who believed in our collective strength to organize for transformative change in every conceivable way. 

A key component of the Layton Legacy project is to encourage and support new waves of activism; to support the long-standing and new emerging groups who are committed to organizing for change in their community.

That’s why we’re excited to invite you to join us on Monday, August 22, 2022 for the Layton Activism Award Celebration. This initiative, as part of Jack's Legacy, is designed to amplify the activism we see all around us. To support, grow, and move forward with the changes we want to see.


We invite you to apply for the second annual Layton Activism Award. We strongly encourage self-nominations! To nominate someone, please use this form:

Let us know what you and your group are doing and why. Describe and share your passion for change, and that of your group/organization. Your involvement not only helps grow the movement overall, it opens up opportunities for your group to access needed resources and training as you continue your activism.

The winner will receive an award of $5000.00 and an opportunity to receive organizing for change training with the Institute for the Change Leaders.

Building Skills for Change - Fall 2022

Building Skills for Change - Fall 2022

Do you have a desire to step up and fight for a better, fairer, more just world? This course is for you.

The Building Skills for Change workshop series is designed to help anyone learn how to make a difference in their community through the basics of strategizing, organizing, telling your own story, and taking effective action.

During this eight week, sixteen-session online course you will learn how to:

  • Tell your story to motivate others to take action.
  • Design a strategy that gets the change you want
  • Structure your team to avoid burnout and facilitate growth
  • Recruit and keep volunteers
  • Choose a strategy and tactics that move decision-makers

After completing the course you will receive a certificate in Organizing for Social Change from the Institute for Change Leaders.

The curriculum is based on the teachings of Harvard University Professor Marshall Ganz, a veteran of the Civil Rights Movement and an adviser to President Obama's 2008 Presidential campaign.

You will learn through lectures and small group activities that will allow you to practice the skills we teach.

You will work with an experienced organizer, who will facilitate your group and help you plan your organizing project. You will finish the course ready to tell your story, with a developed organizing statement, and tools to plan your organizing project's strategy and tactics.

Dates and times

This course takes place over 8 weeks, each Tuesday from 6:00-8:00 pm EST, beginning September 13th, 2022 and ending Novemebr 1st. Coaching circles will be held on Thursdays from 6:00-7:00 pm EST. 

The Tuesday sessions include lectures and facilitator-led breakout groups with the opportunity to practice that week's material. The Thursday sessions function as 'office hours' for participants to ask questions, practice their skills, and receive coaching.


The regular price ticket is $499.00. ICL will be offering a limited number of scholarships to individuals and groups working or volunteering with a non-profit, charity, labour union or social movement. Please complete this form to apply.

Teaching Team

Duncan photoDuncan Pike is a union activist, campaigner, and social movement trainer with a passion for supporting people who are organizing for a more just, fair, and equitable society. As a facilitator and Communications Lead with the Institute for Change Leaders, Duncan has trained thousands of new activists and union members on organizing and campaign strategy and tactics, public narrative, and campaign messaging.

We've trained dozens of organizations, including:

United Way

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The Institute for Change Leaders is a Canadian registered charity that can issue official donation receipts (no. 763310679 RR 0001). ICL is brought to you by the Faculty of Community Services at Toronto Metropolitan University.

Ryerson University