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Social work with youth, Youth -- Mental health services, Young adults -- Mental health services, Youth -- Counseling of


A growing youth movement across the country has developed a vast number of youth and young adult leaders who are passionate and experienced in sharing their stories to create positive systems change. Many strong youth groups and organizations, authentic youth/adult partnerships, federal grant programs, and research and training centers across the country support this movement. Even more importantly, the movement is sustained by the energy and passion of the young leaders and those who support youth voice.

This guide is intended for young people who have chosen to utilize their lived experience as a mechanism to advocate for positive change. The following seven Stages were identified by young leaders who are at various stages of making the transition from a Youth Advocate to an Advocate for Youth. The steps are not defined by age or other demographic but instead by personal experience. The transition period will take varying lengths of time for each individual to complete. While this guide may be useful for those anywhere on this journey, it may be most applicable to those ages 15-30 and adults who support youth voice.


Contributions by Jeremy Long, Rebecca Noelle, Rudy Soto, Raphaelle Richardson and Elizabeth Waetzig.

This document was produced by Youth MOVE National in partnership with the Research and Training Center for Pathways to Positive Futures.

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