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Youth Leadership Shifts the Initiative as YAB Steps into Power

Updated: Jun 28, 2022

To: Dane County Community

From: Dane County Youth Action Board

(Tye’ja Moore, Erika Richardson, Portia Pleadwell, Deja Mays, Rachel Litchman, Mya Simms, Amy Yao, Arree Macon)


Dear Dane County Community Members:

We are the Dane County Youth Action Board (YAB) and we are the group responsible for leading Madison/Dane County through the Youth Homelessness Demonstration Program, by providing live-expertise, youth leadership, and authentic youth collaboration. The Youth Homelessness Demonstration Program is a HUD initiative intended to demonstrate that ending youth homelessness is made possible by empowering young people who have lived the experience of homelessness into leadership roles.

We are working collectively to show other youth and young adults in our community that they, too, can be strong advocates and change makers in our community. We participated in the writing and applying for the YHDP grant, successfully bringing this HUD initiative and funding opportunity to our community. We were also recently successful in advocating for ourselves to make sure that we are compensated for our time and lived experiences as employees, and that those with lived expertise who participated in our listening sessions also received compensation for their expertise and input. This is something rare that many Youth Action Boards across the country are not successful in accomplishing. We are incredibly thankful for the support and partnership from our community in this process, as we reached towards these achievements!

Now, we are advocating for the youth and young adults in our community by requesting a partnership with the City of Madison, our Continuum of Care lead agency (CoC), that will allow us to have a more innovative, collaborative and equitable approach to ending youth homelessness in Dane County. This partnership will look like the City of Madison becoming the YHDP lead planning agency, managing the grant funds and supporting the projects that will be funded to support the end of youth and young adult homelessness. With the support of the Homeless Services Consortium Board, the City of Madison, and our community leaders, we can ensure there are equitable, collaborative, and innovative practices in place, while supporting youth and young adult leaders across the Dane County community.

Again, as the Dane County Youth Action Board we are committed to ending youth and young adult homelessness in the Dane County community through innovative, collaborative and equitable strategies.

In Partnership,

The Dane County Youth Action Board Members

For more information about the Dane County Youth Action Board please visit our website at

For media inquiries, please email

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