PA SOC Youth Driven Standard

Find out what it's all about. . .





What is the Youth Driven Standard?

The Youth Driven Standard is one of eight (8) PA System of Care Standards. Youth Driven is about having an authentic youth voice in leadership positions in county and state government where youth are trained, supported, and valued. The youth are supported to share their voice through stipends, transportation assistance, and childcare, with the goal of making their voice sustainable. Opportunities, like youth voice and leadership, are encouraged and made available to youth at county and state level child-serving systems, through the work of System of Care. Youth receive sufficient information and have a primary decision-making role in terms of their care. 

Youth in Leadership

A minimum of 25% of the County Leadership Team is youth members, who share equal responsibility with family members and system partners. The County Leadership Team ensures that youth members are prepared, trained, supported and valued. The county has mechanisms in place to provide support for youth participation in events such as stipends, assistance with transportation, travel reimbursement, and child care. The County Leadership Teams facilitates the development of sustainable youth efforts and leadership in the county. Opportunities for youth voice and leadership are made available in each respective child-serving system in the county. Peer support is available to youth in the county in order to improve youth and family outcomes. Youth in the county have access to youth organizations that support youth involvement in the system and service-delivery levels. 

What is a Youth Partner?

  • Youth Partner is someone who has lived experienced in one or more systems.
  • Youth Partner is an advocate for youth.
  • Youth Partner has a unique perspective.
  • Youth Partner is an individual who has their own original story.

What is Youth Guided?

  • There are a development and practice of leadership and advocacy skills and a place where an equal partnership is valued.
  • Youth are empowered in their planning process from the beginning and have a voice in what will work for them.
  • Youth receive training on systems and understand the purpose of the system and youth involvement opportunities. 
  • Individually - Youth are engaged in the idea that change is possible in their lives and the systems that serve him or her
  • Community - Partners and stakeholders have an open mind and desire to involve youth
  • Policy - Youth are invited to meetings to speak on their experiences and talk about what's going on

What is Youth Driven?

  • Youthfully understands his or her roles and responsibilities on the team. 
  • Youth describes his or her vision for the future. 
  • Youths are mentors and peer advocates for other youth.
  • Youth is making the transition into adulthood. 
  • Individually - Youth describes their vision for the future and they set goals with input from the team
  • Community - Partners are dedicated to authentic youth involvement, so they listen to youth and make changes accordingly
  • Policy - Youth are calling the meetings, setting the agenda, and able to be self-advocates and peer advocates in the policy-making process