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Young Leaders of Northeast Indiana is an all-volunteer organization committed to making our community a better place. All of YLNI’s efforts are focused on three core endeavors:
1.) Community Growth & Development
We want Fort Wayne and the surrounding areas to be great places to work and live – full of culture, arts & entertainment, great restaurants, places to hang out and things to do. We want a community that supports healthy living with parks, festivals and outdoor activities. And to fuel this growth, we want local businesses and institutions to thrive.
YLNI takes an active role in making all of the above happen. Take, for instance, our commitment to the revitalization of downtown Fort Wayne. We are members of the Greater Fort Wayne Chamber of Commerce and the Northeast Indiana Regional Chamber. Our Community Impact Committee has representation from various local organizations and entities, including The Alliance, Fort Wayne Trails, Northeast Indiana Regional Partnership, Fort Wayne Public Market Committee, Fort Wayne Redevelopment Commission, United Way, and a variety of others seeking to improve our community. Representation like this allows the voice of our demographic to be heard.
2.) Volunteering & Involvement
We believe that getting involved in the community is one of the best ways to make it grow. That’s why we create numerous opportunities for members to volunteer. In fact, many of our events involve the entire community – people of all ages, whether YLNI members or not. Take the YLNI Barr Street Market, for instance. During the summer, the corner of Barr & Wayne Streets is bustling with local farmers, bakers, and craftspeople selling their goods while local musicians serenade the crowds. We also organize YLNI the Vote, a non-partisan campaign to register and educate voters during the general election.
Since community involvement is near and dear to our hearts, it’s no wonder that many members are involved in volunteer groups aside from YLNI, too. We help these members connect and foster closer, more productive links between overlapping volunteer groups whose civic and entrepreneurial missions are similar. One way we do this is through Get on Board, where members are educated about serving on nonprofit boards and we help connect them to opportunities to serve on a board.
3.) Personal & Professional Development
As our members have worked to develop northeast Indiana, they’ve grown as individuals, too. They have networked, formed friendships and business partnerships, learned a lot from each other and become more business-savvy at home and on the job. To accelerate this growth, we host numerous events and programs to help our members expand their horizons and advance in their personal and professional lives.
In recent years, we’ve hosted seminars like The Fundamentals of Home Buying and Are You Financially Sound? There’s also our ongoing series View from the Top, where members learn directly from business leaders. Our most successful endeavor, the Leadership Institute, is an intensive five-seminar training program for members who want a launch pad for career advancement.
Regardless of which programs you choose to participate in, we guarantee you’ll have fun and have lots of opportunities to network. In fact, many of our events are all about networking and meeting new people. That’s a common thread you’ll find in all we do – growing your social and business networks.