Impact Feature Issue on Political Activism and Voter Participation by Persons with Intellectual and/or Developmental Disabilities

Resources for Youth Leadership and Political Involvement

  • National Youth Leadership Network.  The network is a youth-driven, youth-led organization comprised of young adult leaders with disabilities. It promotes leadership development, education, employment, independent living, and health and wellness among young leaders representing the diversity of race, ethnicity, and disability in the U.S. It also fosters the inclusion of young leaders with disabilities into all aspects of society at national, state and local levels, and communicates about issues important to youth with disabilities. The network is supported by the Center for Self-Determination at Oregon Health and Science University.
  • The Kid’s Guide to Social Action.  PDF By Barbara A. Lewis. Published by Free Spirit Press. A practical manual for youth on “how to solve the social problems you choose – and turn creative thinking into positive action.” This book written for youth teaches the skills needed to make a difference by addressing social problems from the local to the national levels. Topics include skills for identifying the problem, letter writing, public speaking, conducting surveys, starting petitions, doing fundraising, getting media coverage, campaigning, doing voter registration, and protesting. It also describes how government bodies work, how laws are made, and how to lobby, change laws, and amend state constitutions. And it has many forms and checklists to use in the process, as well as personal stories of youth making a positive difference.