Youth who have experienced foster care have valuable knowledge about the child welfare system. Youth advisory boards and panels, which are generally run under the auspices of the State or local agency, engage young people currently or formerly in out-of-home care in examining practices and policies that affect the lives of children and youth in care. These resources, including State and local examples, provide guidance on the development, structure, organization, and work of these boards.
2008 Positive Youth Development Toolkit: Engaging Youth in Program Development, Design, Implementation, and Service Delivery (PDF - 1,137 KB)
National Child Welfare Resource Center for Youth Development (2008)
Describes practical strategies and tools for collaborating with youth using a Positive Youth Development approach.
Youth Aging Out Survey Issue: Youth Leadership/Advisory Boards [What Youth Leadership/Advisory Board Structure Currently Exists in Your State?] (PDF - 114 KB)
National Association of Public Child Welfare Administrators (2009)
Contains responses provided by State child welfare agencies concerning the organizational structure of their youth advisory boards.
Engaging Youth: A How-To Guide for Creating Opportunities for Young People to Participate, Lead and Succeed (PDF - 1,700 KB)
Sierra Health Foundation (2006)
Describes best practices in successfully implementing youth leadership activities in Northern California. Appendices include several tools to assist adults and youth in working together to maximize youth engagement in their organizations.
Policy and Procedures Handbook of the Missouri State Youth Advisory Board
Missouri Department of Social Services, Children's Division, Missouri State Youth Advisory Board (2001)
Provides information on recruitment, requirements, orientation, expectations, elected officials requirements, community members, and rules for members. (PDF - 47 KB)
Youth Leadership Advisory Team
Muskie School of Public Service, University of Southern Maine
Provides information on the Youth Leadership Advisory Team (YLAT) in the state of Maine. Youth in care who are involved in YLAT serve as advisors to the child welfare agency. Information on the history, organization, and functioning of this organization is provided. Youth leadership tools and accomplishments of the group are included on the website as well.