IDIA was founded in the belief that one person, equipped with the right tools and resources can change his or her own community, and even in the world. Every major development in global history can be traced back to an individual who had an idea. Real leaders are those that can convince others to help in implementing that idea and to actually doing something.
One of the challenges of living in today's world is trying to figure out where to fit in. It is easy to think that adults are not concerned with your opinions or ideas. IDIA programs are designed to help you to better develop your ideas and to voice your opinions. Whether you want to learn how to be an activist demanding the protection of human rights or even just how to be an educated and engaged citizen, the these programs are for you. We will provide you with the tools that you will need to persuade others in your community, to settle disagreements among your peers, and even to consider the short-term implications and long-term impacts of your decisions.
IDIA's Model United Nations and Model Congress programs put you into the shoes of elected officials from both the United States government and from other states around the world. When you are called upon to consider issues of global significance from the perspective of the United Nations Delegate from the small island nation of Tuvalu, you will begin to understand not only the values of these seemingly isolated people, but you will also better understand your own beliefs. When you consider where the United States should deposit nuclear waste as a senator from Nevada, you will better be able to understand the complexities of important issues such as the environment, public safety, and even the economy.
Model UN and Model Congress conferences are incredibly rewarding programs, but they stress the excitement of learning new things and meeting new people. Each year, IDIA conferences bring together more than 2,000 students from across the United States and around the world. When you are in committee sessions, you will likely be sitting next to someone from a different state, or even a different country. You will have ample opportunity to get to know each other and to start learning about each other's cultures and communities.
We also recognize that not everyone will be, or even seeks to become, an elected leader. The World Youth Leadership and Activism Conference (WYLAC) is a program that will specifically address your desires to do something meaningful in your community. This hand-on experience will address topics such as how to develop an innovative plan, how to gain support among the community and from potential funders, and even how to talk with the media. WYLAC is an entirely interactive program that will work with you as you develop your social conscience, and will provide you with the knowledge necessary to make the world your own.