Youth Catalyst Team Applicant FAQs

YCT Members

What Is The Youth Catalyst Team (YCT)?

The Youth Catalyst Team (YCT) is a national leadership initiative for youth and young adults (ages 16-24) with lived experience expertise*. Youth Catalyst Team (YCT) members operate as paid consultants: using their knowledge, skills, and vision to provide training and coaching, develop tools and resources, propel national awareness efforts, and create transformative change in youth programs, services, and systems.  We are grounded in our vision for Authentic Youth Collaboration and commitment to Equity & Liberation.

Youth and young adult leaders are part of the team at Youth Collaboratory - working in authentic partnership to reimagine possibilities for each youth, family, agency, and the larger youth services field. Through YCT, members also receive training, mentorship, ongoing professional development, and opportunities to expand professional networks with leaders of all ages. Unlike many roles for youth and young adult leaders, YCT does not focus on personal storytelling. Instead, Catalysts use their skills and expertise to partner in all aspects of the work - planning, development, action, reflection, evaluation, and follow-up.   

Who can be a YCT member?

(Applicants must be able to check ALL boxes.)

  • Age 16-24 at time of application
  • Have lived experience expertise (defined as: intersections with emergency shelters, safe-houses, transitional living, or other programs for youth experiencing homelessness, trafficking/commercial sexual exploitation, domestic violence, foster care or juvenile justice system)
  • Can commit to at least 1 year with YCT
  • Can commit to working a minimum of 6 hours per month and attending 1 annual in-person team meeting at a time when such travel and gathering is safe. (date & city to be determined)
  • Have regular access to a computer and internet for virtual meetings 
  • Have proper identification (as needed for travel) 
  • Have a local connection for support (a trusted adult who will act as a local resource, promote your work, and assist you with navigating obstacles)
  • Feel comfortable being known publicly. Although sharing of your name and picture is not required, this information may become public through participation at national events 

Who are we looking for? 

The selection committee will consider the following when filling YCT positions:

  • Motivation, vision, and commitment!
  • Quality completed application and strong letter of recommendation
  • Ability to take on job responsibilities. Responsibilities might include developing and presenting training, writing, researching information, participating in meetings, responding to email, reviewing documents, project visioning, and problem solving.
  • Current stability of life situation and personal well-being
  • Representation from a diverse range of communities (geography, identities, and life experiences)

How much do YCT Consultants get paid?

YCT Consultants are paid $27 hourly. There may be higher rates for specific projects. 

What if I have other questions? 

Contact Kendan Elliott at kendan@youthcollaboratory.org for other information about YCT.


* Lived Experience: Defined as: "intersections with emergency shelters, safe-houses, transitional living, or other programs for youth experiencing homelessness, trafficking/commercial sexual exploitation, domestic violence, foster care or juvenile justice system".