Building the Field of Ethical, Authentic, & Youth-Led Advocacy: Key Components of a Youth Advocacy Program–Juvenile Law Center

Since 2008, Juvenile Law Center has been promoting youth voice and expertise through its Youth Advocacy Program which includes Juveniles for Justice (J4J)*, Youth Fostering Change (YFC), and the Youth Speakers Bureau. Each program provides youth with system involvement, ages 15-22, the opportunity to develop, propose, and advocate for effective solutions to longstanding systemic problems. Through the programs, youth advocates (our youth program members) develop leadership skills, political knowledge, communication and storytelling skills, and a sense of community. By choosing to share their personal experiences to develop and advance reforms, youth advocates help influence Juvenile Law Center’s priorities by working to affect policy change through advocacy, media outreach, and public education.