Youth-led Lorain County organization seeks leaders for council – Morning Journal

A newly created organization in Lorain County is looking for young leaders.

YouthMOVE Ohio is a joint program between the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Ohio and NAMI Lorain County, and is funded by the Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services (OMHAS) and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) .

The organization is recruiting people to serve as leaders on a youth council.

The council is open to young people between the ages of 12 and 30.

Lorain activist Kyriece Brooks, who is the Northern Ohio Regional Youth Manager for YouthMOVE Ohio and Youth Coordinator for NAMI Lorain County, will serve as council overseer.

Brooks said her position on the council not only builds support for northern Ohio youth, but also provides outreach to Lorain County and beyond.

“I work with 11 counties in northern Ohio, and my job is to educate and empower young people,” he said. “We are breaking the mental health stigma and giving them a voice in the mental health field.”

YouthMOVE hopes to improve services and systems that support growth and development as well as raise awareness of youth issues, said Brooks, who added that he was especially excited to involve young people in Lorain County.

“I really want young people from Lorain County to be involved, but the council will be made up of young people from everywhere,” he said.

Brooks said the council will work with community leaders to advocate for young people’s rights.

“Often young people are excluded and not really heard or not heard,” he said. “But I believe that young people have so much wisdom and knowledge in them that deserves to have a platform.

“We want to attend board meetings and other hearings so people know we are here and are able to communicate what we need to thrive.

Going forward, the board will meet virtually, Brooks said.

“Due to everything going on with COVID, we will meet via Zoom,” he said. “But, we hope to have in-person meetings soon.”

The council will be a safe space for those involved, Brooks said.

“I want to give them the opportunity to talk about any mental health issues or abuse they may have experienced,” he said. “Too often we are not given a safe place to express ourselves freely.

“But they will be able to let off steam and then strategize for change.”

For more information or to join the council, contact Brooks at [email protected]