Hampton, Virginia's model of youth civic engagement (YCE) encourages the use of three major pathways (Service, Influence, and Shared Leadership) to actively engage the greatest variety and number of young people in local government, schools, and the community. The YCE pathway of "Influence" gives youth a voice, a chance to serve in informal and formal advisory roles. Young people bring a fresh perspective and enthusiasm, say these authors. Including them in decision-making results in better, more representative decisions. Here, the authors suggest short-term and long-term advisory roles for youth, and briefly describe ways that the Hampton community has created opportunities for youth influence.
Hampton Coalition for Youth, City Hall 22 Lincoln St Hampton, VA 23669; Telephone: 757-728-3280; E-mail: <firstname.lastname@example.org>; Website: www.hampton.gov/foryouth