Nonprofit and community leaders will convene in downtown Louisville for two major conferences next month to learn ways to improve their advocacy and storytelling efforts. Kentucky Youth Advocates will hold the annual Step Up for Kids Conference on October 8 at the Muhammad Ali Center around the theme of “Invest in Kids: Grow our Future.” The following day, on October 9, the Center for Nonprofit Excellence (CNPE) will hold their annual leadership conference and awards luncheon at the Galt House. The groups are partnering to cross-promote and cross-link content and are offering discounts to dual attendees – one conference is about helping kids and the other is about strengthening organizations. The two work together.

“We’re here to talk about kids. What they need and what we can do to better their chances at a successful future. It’s an investment in each and every one of their lives, and an investment in the strength and security of Kentucky’s future,” said Terry Brooks, executive director of Kentucky Youth Advocates. “Our ultimate goal for the day is to have attendees – whether legislators, nonprofit leaders, or concerned citizens – leave with clear action steps they can take to make Kentucky a better place in America for children and families.”

The Step Up for Kids Conference will build advocacy skills, and CNPE’s Nonprofit Leadership Conference will help nonprofit professionals learn how to use storytelling to engage their communities and increase their impact. Individuals who attend both the CNPE and KYA conferences will receive $50 off the CNPE full day conference rate.

“CNPE is a fan of the work performed by Kentucky Youth Advocates and hopes those attending the KYA conference will attend the CNPE conference to further enhance skills that can help them convey their future-changing stories,” shared Kevin Connelly, Executive Director of the Center for Nonprofit Excellence.

The October 8 Step Up for Kids Conference will draw four national experts on children’s issues, in addition to Kentucky citizens ranging from Cabinet Secretaries to youth who are aging out of foster care. Kentucky Youth Advocates will also recognize one journalist and two state legislators who have stepped up for kids in a lunch awards ceremony.

Following the Step Up for Kids Conference, attendees and others from the public are invited for an evening with the arts from 5:00-7:00 PM featuring a special photography exhibit on display, Colors of Life, which spotlights the needs of America’s children, as well as the Ali Center’s own painting exhibit, Americans Who Tell the Truth.  Kentucky youth from the Sunfish Tumblers Bluegrass Band and the Safiyyah Dance Company will perform, and hors d’oeuvres and a cash bar will be available. For more information and to register, please visit

The Center for Nonprofit Excellence’s Twelfth Annual Nonprofit Leadership Conference and Awards Luncheon is the one conference each year where nonprofits from every corner of the community come together to learn, network and share their stories. The theme this year is “Tell Your Story. Engage Your Community.”  The featured keynoter and facilitator is Andy Goodman, a nationally recognized author, speaker and consultant in the field of public interest communications. He will explain why he believes storytelling remains the single most powerful communication tool you possess and he will offer specific ways organizations can use stories to advance mission.  For more information and to register, please visit