Community Advocates Leadership Academy
Learn, Explore, and Lead Collectively
The Community Advocates Leadership Academy (CALA) is an 8-month training program that provides participants with the foundation to run and participate in successful campaigns for conservation and environmental justice. The training program equips participants with the tools to create effective campaigns for environmental advocacy that prioritize race equity.
Launched in 2013, CALA has served as the training ground for over 200 graduates who make a difference in the environmental and social challenges of our time. The CALA program consists of three important elements: the 8-month training program, the collaborative capstone project, and an active alumni network.
Want to Join?
We are now accepting
applications for our 2021 class!
Donate to support CALA and your gift will be matched up to $10,500
Application Season is Open for 2021
Who should apply
Our goal each year is to form a cohort of 20-25 people who represent the ethnic, geographic, generational, gender, and economic diversity of the region and live in or serve San Mateo and Santa Clara Counties’ communities.
Accepted applicants are distinguished by their
- Commitment to be a more effective agent of change
- Desire to work across sectors toward a vision for the region to be a resilient, equitable place where wildlife thrive, everyone has natural beauty to enjoy, and communities live in balance with nature
- Desire to explore and address systemic oppression to increase the power of communities who historically have been disempowered
Become an advocate for your community.
We encourage you to download the application form, fill it out, and save it in as a Word.doc for future reference. Once you have done this, use it to fill out the form below with your answers.
About the 8-Month Program
During the cohort-based program, participants learn how to lead effective environmental advocacy campaigns that are grounded in social justice. As part of the curriculum, participants work in small groups to develop advocacy campaigns that address current, local environmental issues while integrating racial justice as a key component. After graduation, Green Foothills is committed to resourcing and helping to bring to life the capstone project through offerings of strategic advice, partnership-building support, fundraising, and advocacy.
People who graduate from CALA will be able to:
- Articulate their personal mission statement
- Identify the next leadership role they will pursue
- Hold a rich connection and shared experience with a cohort of changemakers
- More effectively advocate for the natural environment
- Develop a strategy based on power mapping to influence key decision makers
- Recognize how bias and systems of oppression play out in local environmental issues
- Participate in annual CALA events
- Find support in a robust alumni network of 200+ passionate individuals
The CALA 2021 cohort will meet via Zoom once a month on the following Saturdays on 9am-12pm.
- January 9, 2021: Class Orientation
- February 6, 2021: Preparing for a Campaign
- March 6, 2021: Goal-Setting and Community Expertise
- April 3, 2021: Power Mapping and Coalition Building
- May 1, 2021: Grassroots and Grasstops Engagement
- June 5, 2021: Theory of Change and Messaging
- July 10, 2021: Finalizing the Campaign Plan and Looking Back on CALA Journey
- August 8, 2021: Graduation and Looking Ahead (hopefully in person at a park)
We encourage all interested people to apply regardless of financial means. Nearly full and partial scholarships are available thanks to the financial support of the Knight Foundation, San Mateo County Health System, Green Foothills’ members, and funding sources we are actively soliciting right now. Please consider making a donation to support the Community Advocates Leadership Academy.