SWAT Youth Council is a group of youth who have had personal experience in one or more of the child-serving systems – Mental Health, Juvenile Justice, Child Welfare, Public Schools. The council gets together each month to learn from each other, from community leaders and from other professionals about topics and issues that youth care about. Most importantly, SWAT is a way for youth voice to be included in these systems so youth can influence change and be heard. The change that SWAT youth are seeking is to improve the services and supports these systems and community agencies provide
youth and their families.
SWAT is connected directly to the child-serving systems through the System of Care Leadership Team so there is a direct path of communication from SWAT members to system leaders.
SWAT is for youth and lead by youth. The SWAT governance board consists of youth who are elected by their peers. These members hold an office and have specific roles, responsibilities and duties to provide oversight and guidance to the work of the SWAT Youth Council. Membership to SWAT is open to any youth who is interested in participating and leading the change through youth voice and empowerment. There are many opportunities to become engaged in SWAT activities from attending monthly meetings to joining a sub-committee (an ongoing committee that meets regularly) or a task force (a committee that meets for a specific period of time to address one issue or project at a time).
As a SWAT member, youth will not only learn about topics like wellness, job seeking, and relationships but will also develop leadership skills to work together and in the community to reduce the stigma that surrounds youth who have mental health and behavioral challenges.
SWAT Youth Council has an open meeting on the 4th Tuesday of each month. These meetings are based on a topic that is important to youth now. These open meetings are a time for youth to come together and share their voice. Please contact Bianca Logan (see below) to RSVP for these meetings.
To join, interested youth can obtain and complete an application by contacting Bianca Logan, Youth Engagement Specialist at 753-2638 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
More information is available at www.monroecountysystemofcare.org/youth.