Youth councils amplify voices to impact positive change in their communities

Youth councils amplify voices to impact positive change in their communities

In today’s fast-paced world, young people face many challenges that can impact how they feel and their overall health. They have to figure out things like how to handle their feelings, make good friendships, and end bullying. Growing up isn’t easy and comes with its own set of obstacles.

In May we celebrated National Adolescent Health Month™ (NAHM™), which is a time to focus on the well-being of young people across the United States. However, these issues are persistent and we work to address them all year. 

Recognizing the critical role that young people play in shaping the future, the Arizona Department of Health Services (ADHS) has embarked on an initiative with community partners to empower youth across the state through the establishment and funding of various youth councils.

The youth councils serve as dynamic platforms for young leaders to address pressing public health issues affecting themselves and their peers. By focusing on topics like suicide prevention, bullying prevention, healthy relationships, well visits to the doctor, injury prevention, and dental care, these councils are at the forefront of driving positive change in their communities.

At the heart of this initiative lies the belief that young people possess the creativity, resilience, and passion needed to address the challenges they face. By fostering positive experiences, relationships, and environments, the program empowers youth to take initiative and become agents of change in their communities.

One of the key strengths of the youth councils is their ability to amplify youth voices at both the state and local levels. Members actively contribute insights to state-level projects and participate in the development of the biennial Adolescent Health Conference, ensuring that their perspectives shape policies and practices that directly impact their lives. Moreover, these councils play a vital role in addressing critical health issues within their local communities.

Youth councils across the state have been sharing ADHS social media messages, which were posted continuously last month. The posts helped share information on the projects being implemented by youths in their communities throughout Arizona. 

Through their dedication, passion, and commitment to improving adolescent health, these young leaders are paving the way for a brighter, healthier future for young people in our state. As we continue to invest in youth empowerment and engagement, we not only strengthen communities but also cultivate a generation of leaders who are equipped to tackle the challenges of tomorrow with confidence and compassion.

Find resources in your area including information about adolescent wellness visitsbullying preventionteen pregnancy prevention, and mental health.

By Celia Nabor|June 5th, 2024|GeneralPrevention|0 Comments

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About the Author: Celia Nabor

Celia Nabor is the Assistant Director for Prevention Services at the Arizona Department of Health Services (ADHS). Since 2002, she has administered local, state, and Federal programs for three Arizona counties and ADHS. She has served in various leadership roles at ADHS including State WIC Director, Bureau Chief of Nutrition and Physical Activity, Office Chief of Vital Records, Program Integrity Manager, Project Manager in Newborn Screening and Lean Management Coach. In her current role, she oversees more than 60 public health programs within the Bureau of Assessment and Evaluation (BAE), Bureau of Chronic Disease and Health Promotions (BCDHP), Bureau of Nutrition and Physical Activity (BNPA), and the Bureau of Women’s and Children’s Health (BWCH).

Source: Arizona Department of Health Services