Engaging Young Adults

Young adults are the present and future leaders of movements for peace and justice.

Engaging with Young Adult Leaders

For more than four decades, young adults have been essential partners in advancing the world we seek. Their involvement energizes our Quaker lobby – and strengthens the fabric of the Religious Society of Friends. Through their work with FCNL, young adults have propelled our mission forward, and they have also emerged better-equipped to be lasting advocates for peace and justice.

Video source: Quakerspeak

We have invested in young adult power throughout our history. That commitment is stronger than ever before, with new programs and investments in young adult advocacy, leadership, and development. Through weekend events, summer internships, and year-long young adult programs, FCNL is helping young adults discover their power as lobbyists for change and ensuring that young leaders have the skills and experience to lead.


Organizing Young Adults To Preserve Medicaid

Just days before a vote to eliminate the Medicaid program as we know it, 400 young advocates came to Washington, DC for FCNL's Spring Lobby Weekend. Through more than 150 lobby vists, they helped convince representatives to stop a vote on this damaging bill.

Young adults lobby Sen. Rubio (FL)

Participants in Spring Lobby Weekend lobby the office of Senator Marco Rubio (FL).


Empowering Community Activism

Advocacy Corps organizers laugh in front of the Capitol.

Advocacy Corps members standing in front of the Capitol.

FCNL offers a new community organizing program to young adults throughout the United States. For nine months, organizers age 19-30 rally community support for federal legislative priorities. Participants connect local activists and leaders with their members of Congress while learning and applying critical organizing and leadership skills. Organizers earn a $3000 stipend for successful work.


Training Young Adult Advocates

Interns hold a War Is Not the Answer sign

2015 Summer Interns

FCNL formalizes its summer internship program for college students and other young adults ages 18-23. Summer interns spend eight weeks working at FCNL fulltime throughout June and July, offering support to FCNL programs and participating in networking and professional development opportunities. Interns are paid a stipend of $3600 for their work.


Investing in Young Adults

FCNL launches a major new initiative to support the next generation of advocates. More than half the funds raised through The World We Seek: Now Is the Time capital campaign will go towards current and new opportunities for young people to develop as leaders for peace and justice.

FCNL creates rich opportunities for young Quakers to live into their faith and create real change by lobbying on the issues most important to them.

Annie Boggess, FCNL Program Assistant 2012-2013

Bringing Young Adults to Lobby in DC

Students hold Spring Lobby Weekend sign

Students from Scattergood Friends School visit Washington, DC for Spring Lobby Weekend. Emily Sajewski / FCNL

FCNL welcomes hundreds of young adults and others to come to Washington D.C. in March for their first annual Spring Lobby Weekend. Attendees learn how to be effective changemakers by lobbying on an important federal issue. Participants hear from policy experts and high-profile speakers, lobby members of Congress and their staff and get a crash course in impactful advocacy techniques.

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Shaping Leaders

Reza Aslan, religious scholar, political commentator, and best-selling author of Zealot, serves as a summer intern at FCNL in 1998. Aslan is one of many alumni of FCNL's young adult programs who go to lead successful and influential careers directed towards advancing peace and justice.

Reza Aslan and Jim Casan book signing Annual Meeting

Reza Aslan, author of the best-selling book Zealot, was a summer intern at FCNL in 1998


Opposing Arms Sales

Lead by the tireless efforts of a full-time intern, Catherine Shaw, FCNL spearheads the interfaith opposition to a massive arms sale to Israel, Egypt, and Saudi Arabia. Shaw coordinates congressional testimonies and a letter signed by fourteen religious organizations. Though the sale was narrowly approved, FCNL's nonpartisan, faith-led approach sways many Senators to oppose the deal, and FCNL's warnings about military aid prove prescient as U.S.-led militarization of the region contributes to violence throughout the 80s and 90s.

I felt empowered by my work at FCNL, as both a participant in our democracy, and as a Quaker with deep convictions about the world we seek.

Damian Morden-Snipper, FCNL Program Assistant 2012-2013

Valuing Human Rights

After his internship year, Steve Angell continues to work for FCNL as a legislative assistant. His work, which centers around full employment and criminal justice reform, is integral to the continued development of FCNL's human rights program, especially as that program grows to encompass domestic concerns as well as international. Angell is one of countless young adults who have not only benefited from FCNL's young adult programming but have gone on to shape and define the organization.


Founding of Washington Office on Latin America

WOLA logo

Diane Edwards LaVoy, one of the first participants in FCNL's new internship program, helps found the Washington Office on Latin America immediately after her time at FCNL. WOLA is dedicated to connecting policymakers in Washington, DC with those with on-the-ground experiences of Latin America and is an important organization working on human rights.


Working for Change as Young Quakers

Young Quakers disillusioned and frustrated with the Vietnam war ask FCNL to set up an internship program through which they could focus on Congress. The program continues to this day. Since its inception, hundreds of recent graduates have spent 11 months at FCNL learning to advocate, developing as leaders, and enriching Quaker lobbying.

[FCNL interns] have gone on to use their experience in a variety of national, international, and local work. Often these are young Friends who return to their own meetings or join other Friends meetings, bringing with them intimate knowledge of FCNL and the legislative process.

Edward Snyder