Call for Applications: The 2025 Community Engagement Exchange (CEE) Program (Fully-funded)

CATEGORY: Training

Judith Macharia ()

The Community Engagement Exchange Program is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State with funding provided by the U.S. Government and supported in its implementation by IREX.

CEE equips dedicated visionaries with the expertise, skills, and resources to develop multisector approaches and build healthy and engaged communities in over 100 countries.

A transformational leadership development experience, the Community Engagement Exchange Program is a year-long program designed to enable civil society leaders, ages 21-27, to harness the power of networks, relationships, and information for the public good, specifically on issues related to civic dialogue and peacebuilding, open and participatory government, women and gender, environmental sustainability, and youth engagement. Fellows are supported in their fellowship by a select group of seasoned civil society experts, known as CEE Mentors, who support fellows’ integration into the larger global civil society ecosystem by mentoring CEE fellows and sharing their technical expertise.

Program Activities

  • Three-month U.S.-based practicum: CEE fellows are matched with nonprofit organizations, private entities, and government offices across the United States where they work with U.S. colleagues on initiatives related to civil society issues they face in their own communities.
  • Leadership and Civic Engagement Academy: Through the Academy’s blended learning components, fellows will develop and practice leadership skills that are essential for building their individual and collective abilities to lead and address societal challenges.
  • Community Engagement Project (CEP): The culmination of the fellows’ program is their actionable project in their home country focused on one of the five CEE themes. Alumni also have the opportunity to apply for a CEP exchange with a practicum host or CEE Specialist that will enable them to travel to their home country to further scale their CEP.
  • Continuing Global and Local Networking:  CEE is a network of emerging civil society leaders that will continue to grow through Innovation Hubs that engage knowledge sharing and collaboration with a variety of stakeholders.

Each fellow focuses on one of five themes throughout the program:

  • Civic dialogue and peacebuilding: Fellows explore models and strategies that support public discourse, civic membership, deliberative participation, and collaboration across diverse communities.
  • Open and participatory government: Fellows explore civic education, civic engagement, deliberative participation, open and transparent systems, community organizing and advocacy, civil liberties and human rights, participatory democracy, good governance, anticorruption efforts, ethics, accountability, press freedom, and fair elections.
  • Environmental sustainability: Fellows focus on how to engage communities to address climate change, water and resource management, food access and security, health, sustainable community-based agriculture, and social entrepreneurship for environmental issues.
  • Women and gender: Fellows explore innovative and inclusive models for ensuring that women and individuals marginalized because of their gender are supported, empowered, and included in all aspects of public life.
  • Youth engagement: Fellows focus on empowering youth voices, building multigenerational connections, and providing community engagement and volunteer opportunities that help prepare the next generation of active, informed citizens.





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