LEAD UP RVA (Leadership Education and Development Under Progress) was created to provide opportunities for our region's youth to acquire a sense of themselves as leaders and reflect on self in relation to others.  The program guides youth to discover self by looking outward as well as inward and to develop a feeling of accountability in the context of a relationship among peers.  LEAD UP RVA enhances existing youth programs by engaging LMR members with groups of teenagers, many from challenging circumstances, to increase their knowledge and understanding of what constitutes good and effective leadership.  Together, they discuss how to separate leadership characteristics and models from negative goals and increase understanding of followership.

The program is available to any youth program in the region looking to enhance the experience of its participants free of charge.  To inquire about participating in the LEAD UP RVA program or for more information, please contact Victoria Velasquez at vvelasquez@lmronline.org.

The following responses from youth participants illustrate LEAD UP RVA's impact:

"I thought that leadership was just telling other people what to do.  Now I see it is more complex than that and involves collaborating."

"I learned that speaking my mind and being assertive about it is OK but it is all in how you say it.  This can help me get my point across in a fashionable manner."

Current participating organizations include:
- Mayor's Youth Academy
- YMCA of Greater Richmond
- James River Leadership Academy
- ART 180
- Partnership for the Future