Crossposted from the National School-Based Health Alliance
The School-Based Health Alliance (SBHA) seeks new members to join our Youth Advisory Council (YAC) as part of ongoing efforts to amplify the youth voices in school-based health care. Youth who have current or prior access to a school-based health center (SBHC), are working to address health care issues affecting young people, and are passionate about school-based health care are encouraged to apply.
What is the Youth Advisory Council (YAC)?
Lead. Engage. Connect. Since 2013, SBHA has worked with young people across the country who are eager to initiate positive change in the lives of their peers and communities regarding healthcare issues. The YAC is a youth-led service group, bringing students from across the country together with the goals of supporting youth development efforts, advancing health care access for their peers, and promoting health literacy to increase youth engagement in school-based health centers (SBHCs). Through the YAC, youth share their expertise on important health topics, build connections with a network of youth passionate about school-based health, and cultivate knowledge and skills about public health, health care, and youth development.
What does YAC Membership mean?
As a member of the YAC, you are joining a national organization that collectively works towards the advancement of school-based health care. Your position in our organization reflects our commitment to increasing the ability of youth, such as yourself, to serve as effective promoters and agents of your own health care. As key a stakeholder in school-based health centers (SBHCs), you can provide critical input to the development and delivery of services and awareness efforts for health topics and needs. We believe that you possess the power to shape programs and outreach activities that can in turn affect the health of students in your schools, communities, and nationwide.
What opportunities will the YAC connect me to?
The YAC members are passionate students dedicated to sharing their perspectives on prevalent, adolescent–focused topics that range from mental health to healthy relationships. While some of these opportunities are through the YAC and SBHA, other organizations request YAC member participation. Here are a few highlights from this past year:
“As a member of the Youth Advisory Council, I had the opportunity to come alongside experienced health care providers of all varieties to help create a playbook regarding health care transition for young adults. I attended meetings that explained every part of the playbook while simultaneously giving feedback from a youth perspective. We were able to develop a guidebook to help make the transition into adult healthcare more understandable and applicable for youth!”Brooklyn Waller, YAC Member Since 2019Tweet
“As an intern for SBHA, I’ve worked with the Yale Play2Prevent Lab to develop a video game that prevents opioid misuse in youth. This work is important to me because I have always been passionate about substance use, and this opportunity allowed me to put that passion into action while sharing my voice!”Baila Salifou, Former YAC MemberTweet
“Health-E You/Salud i Tu is an innovative and interactive contraceptive mobile health education application that helps to inform young people of their choices in contraceptives that would best fit their lifestyle needs. By developing this app in tandem with PCORI and public health leaders across the country, young people are supported in their decision-making and can make a more informed decision on their reproductive health. This is a topic I am very passionate about, as I believe people have a right to complete autonomy when it comes to making decisions about their body, and it does so in a way that makes contraceptive education easier to understand and more accessible.”Audrey Gabriel, YAC Member Since 2019Tweet