Youth

On this page you will find a range of resources that can directly support young people. In a nutshell, here are the main categories of resources you’ll find here: get involved in youth leadership and community organizing, build skills in youth leadership, learn about substances, find resources that can help someone quit or reduce substance use, ways to care for your mental health, specific resources and websites that support LGBT+ youth , and more!

 

Youth Power – Get Involved!

Hampshire County

SPIFFY Youth Leadership Work
  • Current SPIFFY Youth Leadership Work: SPIFFY is currently working with a group of youth in Hampshire County to create a Youth Leadership Clearinghouse (YLC). The purpose of the YLC is for youth across the county to learn about and get involved in opportunities of youth activism, leadership, and engagement. We also send out a monthly e-newsletter with new and ongoing youth leadership and activism opportunities in Hampshire County! Contact for involvement or to learn more: apolokoff@collaborative.org; tsogoba@collaborative.org 
  • Past SPIFFY Youth Leadership Work 
Community Action Youth Programs
  • About: Youth Programs provides free youth development programs for individuals ages 14-24 in Hampshire County, Franklin County, and the North Quabbin region. 
  • Programs: Youth Council, Shout Out, Gen X, Say Something
  • Contact for involvement: ldavis@communityaction.us 
Northampton Youth Commission
  • About: The Northampton Youth Commission serves to create a means of communication between city leaders and young people in Northampton. The Northampton Youth Commission is a group of young people between the ages of 13 – 18 who are interested in working to improve the lives of young people in the community by discussing issues of concern and working to provide solutions. 
  • Apply to the commission here 
  • Contact for involvement: elijahgbacal@gmail.com 
South Hadley Peer Leaders
  • About: The Peer Leaders are a group of students who support social action and good decisions and want to prevent teen substance use.
  • Contact for involvement: amazzulli@shschools.com   
Youth Leadership Healthy Relationships Workshops
  • About: SPIFFY co-sponsors this Teen Leaders Program on Relationship Health and Abuse. This workshop series is facilitated by JAC Patrissi and Monica Moran. The next workshop series will be a 12 Week Program for teens in grades 9-12 and will meet Tuesdays 3-5pm, Feb 1, 2022 – May 10, by Zoom. 
  • Contact for involvement: moranmonica9@gmail.com   

Statewide Youth Advocacy

The 84
  • About: The 84 is a statewide movement of youth fighting tobacco in Massachusetts. The 84 represents the 84% of Massachusetts youth who did NOT smoke when the movement began. Now, 93.4% of youth do NOT smoke. Youth groups in a high school or community organization who want to fight against the tobacco and vaping industries sign up to become an 84 Chapter and be a part of the movement.
  • Contact for involvement: ccaminiti@hria.org 
Youth WOS (Wipe Out Stigma)
  • About: Youth Wipe Out Stigma (WOS) is a new statewide group of youth working to raise awareness about issues relating to mental health impacting young people as well as advocating for policies that promote positive mental health in Massachusetts. WOS hopes to actualize the passion and ideas of young people to make meaningful changes for youth struggling with mental health. If you are a young person ages 14-18 living in Massachusetts and interested in advocating for young people’s mental health, please fill out this application form to join Youth WOS! WOS is looking for young people who can attend at least one monthly virtual meeting and will support the projects and campaigns to collectively decide to take on. 
  • Contact for involvement: WipeOutStigma@gmail.com 
Youth Move
  • About: Youth MOVE National is a youth-driven, chapter-based organization dedicated to uniting the voices of youth nationwide. Youth M.O.V.E. National members work as a diverse collective to unite the voices and causes of youth while raising awareness around youth issues. 
  • Contact for involvement: dkaplan@ppal.net  
Do Something
  • About: As the largest not-for-profit exclusively for young people and social change, DoSomething’s millions of members represent every US area code and 131 countries. Using our digital platform, DoSomething members join our volunteer, social change, and civic action campaigns to make real-world impact on causes they care about. 
  • Register as a member here
SADD
  • About: SADD (Students Against Destructive Decisions) empowers and mobilizes students and adult allies to engage in positive change through leadership and smart decision-making.
  • Contact for involvement: Ask your school principal if your school has a SADD chapter.
Massachusetts State House

Resources for Youth

Youth Leadership
  • Instagram for Advocacy and Communications toolkit (Resource link)
  • 73 Community Service Project Ideas (Resource Link)
  • MediaWise
    • About: MediaWise empowers people of all ages to become more critical consumers of content online. We teach people digital media literacy and fact-checking skills to spot misinformation and disinformation, with initiatives specifically designed to engage Gen Z, college students and older Americans. Our innovative, digital-first program works constantly to address the ever-changing landscape of misinformation across the internet. (Resource link)
  • How-To Guides: How students can confront systemic concerns and create lasting change in their school and community (Resource link)
  • Tips for Speaking to the Media Toolkit (Resource link)
  • MA Youth Leadership Camps (Resource link)
  • Youth Participatory Action Resource Guide (Resource link)
  • Youth Mapping (Resource link)
  • Anti-Defamation League’s No Place for Hate Incident Guide (Resource link)
  • Protesting 101: How to Stay Safe on the Streets (Resource link
  • Evokate
    • About: A tool for young adults who are passionate about intersectional issues related to mental health and want to advocate for change. (Website)
  • Redefy
    • About: We are an organization by teenagers, for teenagers seeking to empower schools and communities with resources and information to be more inclusive. (Website)
  • Youth Time Magazine
    • Youth Time Magazine is a platform run by young people and for young people around the globe. The main purpose of the magazine is to develop relevant content to help youth around the globe to direct their youth time towards social responsibility and service to the world. The Magazine covers the stories of young successful entrepreneurs, useful skillsets for the career landscape of the 21st century, top universities, open calls for grants and competitions, volunteering opportunities as well as alternative perspectives on various topics. They want to raise awareness of global issues and provide relevant information on where to find the answers for their solutions. (Website)
LGBTQ+ and Mental Health
  • Diverse Mental Health Resources Hub (Resource link)
  • What Helps & What Harms BIPOC & LGBTQIA2S+ Youth Navigating Mental Health (Resource link
  • Gender Identity toolkits (Resource link)
  • What is Complex Trauma? A Resource Guide for Youth (Resource link)
  • Mental Health Facts and Information (Resource link)
  • Caring for Your Mental Health (Resource link)
  • Go Ask Alice! Emotional Health Q&A (Resource link)
  • Focus on What Matters (Resource link)
  • Mental Health Resource Center (Resource link)
  • Bending the Mold: An Action Kit for Transgender Students
    • This toolkit is designed to assist transgender, gender non-conforming, questioning, and ally students to make school a safer place. Resources include how to advocate for change as well as an extensive list of resources to help you connect with the transgender community and find support. (Resource link)
  • The Trevor Project seeks to end suicide among lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer & questioning young people. Here are some of the resources they offer:
    • TrevorLifeline – TrevorLifeline is at the center of our crisis intervention and suicide prevention services, with volunteers at our call centers reaching young people in crisis 24/7, 365 days a year all across the country. (Resource link)
    • TrevorText – TrevorText is a channel where LGBTQ young people can text a trained Trevor counselor for support and crisis intervention at any time of day from their mobile device. We expanded TrevorText and TrevorChat to 24/7 operation this year to reach more youth than ever before. (Resource link)
    • TrevorChat – TrevorChat is our instant messaging service for LGBTQ youth. This 24/7 platform is also led by our trained Trevor counselors. TrevorChat and TrevorText are our fastest-growing crisis service departments. (Resource link)
    • Protect Your Space and Well-Being on Instagram Guide (Resource link)
    • The Coming Out Handbook (Resource link)
  • Give Us The Floor
    • About: We provide LGBTQ+ teens in distress with the peer-positive human connection that they are too often missing. We help LGBTQ+ teens deal with distress through inclusive, innovative and unique online peer Supportive Group Chats that provide constant contact and anonymity in a safe teen-only community, breaking the isolation and shame cycles they are experiencing. Trained teens facilitate the confidential groups and participants help each other with prevalent mental health and social issues such as depression, isolation, anxiety, identity, discrimination, bullying, relationships, domestic violence, and body image. (Resource link)
Facts on Substances
  • Truth Initiative: A nonprofit public health organization committed to making tobacco use and nicotine addiction a thing of the past. (Resource link)
    • Paid opportunity: Truth Initiative’s “Teen Quitting Vaping Study.”  (Resource link)
    • Learn how to make up to $95 with surveys here (Resource link)
  • “The Great Manipulator” 30 sec vaping ad (Video link)
  • Facts. No Filters PSAs (Resource link)
  • NIDA for Teens National Institute on Drug Abuse for teens. Latest facts on drugs, teen use and its effects (Resource link)
  • Mouse Party Game (Resource link)
  • Social Environment Impacts the Reward Pathway video (Video link)
  • Short substance videos (1 min. animated, how a drug impacts the brain) (Video link)
  • 5 min TedEd animation: The dangers of mixing drugs (Video link)
  • 10 min TedEd animation: How do cigarettes affect the body? (Video link)
  • TedTalk: Why it’s so hard to make healthy decisions (Video link)
Other Resources for Youth
  • For help quitting vaping/tobacco:
  • Alcohol-related:
    • For evaluating your own alcohol use and other resources about alcohol (Resource link)
    • For information on dealing with a parent who is using drugs or alcohol: One-pager (Resource link)
    • Alateen: A place just for teens affected by someone else’s alcoholism. (Resource link)
  • Other websites, local supports, and resources:
    • Your Healthiest Self: Wellness toolkits (Resource link)
    • Homeless Youth Handbook (Resource link)
    • Youth Pages of Franklin Co (AmeriCorps TSP creation) Website
    • Drug and Alcohol Treatment and Addiction Resource Guide for Hampshire, Hampden, and Franklin Counties (Resource link)
    • Where to dispose of unwanted/out-of-date drugs (Resource link)
    • National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (Resource link)
    • The Herren Project:
      • About: Herren Project is a national nonprofit organization providing free resources and support for the treatment, recovery and prevention of substance use disorder. (Resource link)
      • Student Resources (Resource link)
    • DIAL/SELF helps young people become independent by connecting them with housing, employment, education and civic opportunities in Franklin, Hampshire and Hampden Counties and the North Quabbin region. (Resource link)
    • Community Action Pioneer Valley offers a range of services for Franklin and Hampshire Counties, including Youth and Workforce Development. (Resource link)
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