What we Do
Our work is all about working toward CO-creating hope, by connecting, with each other in the YaYA Council, and rippling outward to connect with Wyoming’s youth, young adults, and the people, organizations, and communities that care about them.
Our work is inspired by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Kaiser Permanente’s groundbreaking study in Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs).
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention explain that ACEs are potentially traumatic events that occur in childhood (ages 0-17 years). For example:
– Experiencing violence, abuse, or neglect
– Witnessing violence in the home or the community
– Having a family member attempt or die by suicide
Also included are aspects of the child’s environment that can undermine their sense of safety, stability, and bonding, such as growing up in a household with:
– Substance Abuse Problems
– Mental Health Problems
– Instability due to parental separation or household members being in jail or prison
ACEs can lead to problems in education and future job potential, risk of injury, teen pregnancy, unintended pregnancy, sexually transmitted infections, depression, anxiety, hopelessness, and shortened life expectancy.
YaYAs Work Together to Promote Individual, Family, and Community Protective Factors
Connecting with Each Other:
We meet twice a month to share stories about our own life experiences as youth and young adults, and what we see as needed changes in Wyoming. We have guests who join us to teach us about how trauma and stressful life experiences affect children and youth, and what we can do to co-create hope.
Connecting with You:
Whether you’re a youth or young adult, a parent or caregiver, a concerned community member, or a person who works in a place that cares about youth and young adult health, we want to connect with you in these possible ways:
Connectedness Events: Learn more and sign up at our upcoming events page. We have social and learning events for youth, young adults, parents and caregivers, and community organizations.
Partnerships: If you work in an organization and want to partner with us, contact us by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
YaYA News: If you’d like to sign up for our newsletter, click here.
Join the YaYA Council: If you’re a young person and would like information about becoming a YaYA, click here
Connecting with Organizations:
Children, youth and young adults are served by many organizations working to promote protective factors and co-create spaces of hope. YaYAs are partnering with these committees and councils to share our voices as direction setters and change agents:
Wyoming Department of Health State Health Improvement Plan Work Groups for Mental Health Care Access, Substance Abuse, and Suicide Prevention
Wyoming Department of Health Maternal and Child Health Youth and Young Adult Health Programs on Suicide Prevention and Safe Teen Driving
Wyoming Health Council for Access to Reproductive Health Care
Wyoming Equality Health Access Committee for LGBTQIA+ Access to Health Care
Wyoming 2030 for Developing Futures of Hope
Wyoming Coalition Against Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault for Primary Prevention of Sexual Violence
Wind River Justice Pods on Community Accountability, Food Justice/Sovereignty, and Environmental Justice – contact us at email@example.com for more information
Wind River Youth Summit – contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information
Connecting Through Storytelling:
We share our stories to start conversations of hope and to let you know you’re not alone. Our stories are told through Photovoice. Click here to see our stories