The RISE Challenge creates a generation of citizens with the knowledge, skills, and motivation to improve community resilience to natural disasters.

RISE Challenge is:

Guided by the Earth Force Process, students research their communities to determine vulnerabilities to natural disasters and the local policies or practices affecting them. Then, they develop and implement plans to improve the vulnerabilities.

Then, students submit proposals to the RISE Challenge explaining the change they want to make, what strategies they will employ, what it will cost, and who they will approach to support the project. Students are given rubrics and guidelines to help develop their proposals. Completed proposals are reviewed and ranked by judges. Students with the top proposals are invited to give a presentation at the RISE Challenge Summit. Top placements receive prize funds.

The Challenge isn’t over when the Summit is over! After students have proposed their ideas for change, they are encouraged to implement them. In the remaining months of the school year, students work to complete their projects with funds awarded by the Challenge, or funds they have raised on their own. 

Why it Works

Student Change Agents

Young people experience being change agents

Community Resilience

This leads to increased resilience in the community (building their sense of civic efficacy)

Long-Term Results

...which results in the long-term engagement needed to ensure a robust response to the ongoing threat posed by climate change.

Find us in your state


  • ​Colorado educators
  • Formal and non-formal educators
  • Open to grades 5-10


  • ​Illinois educators
  • Formal and non-formal educators
  • Open to grades 5-10


  • ​Montana educators
  • Formal and non-formal educators
  • Open to grades 5-10
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