To read this document, sign up for free access to our entire library

By joining the ChangeLab Solutions community, you'll get access to all our law & policy resources. And we'll notify you when we release a new tool related to your sector or area of interest.

Pathways to Policy

A step-by-step playbook for young people who want to change the world

Fact Sheet
Child Care & Schools
Good Governance

Young people are raising their voices to create safer, healthier communities—even if they’re not old enough to vote yet.

From #NeverAgain to #MeToo, young people have been at the forefront of advocacy movements for decades, their passion and idealism sparking millions of people to take action. How can we channel that energy in a way that can lead to concrete public policy change? We created Pathways to Policy to answer that question—and to support young people in their pursuit of a better world.

Young people co-designed this resource at every phase, from formative research through design, to make sure it reflects their needs and interests. The result is a playbook that can inform youth advocacy work on a variety of topics, from defining strategies that will help you meet your goal to seeking support from family and friends.

Pathways to Policy is for any youth advocacy group or individual young person looking to build their capacity to advocate for healthy changes in their community, whether they follow the steps from start to finish with a facilitator or dive right into the section that applies to their specific situation.

To create this guide, ChangeLab Solutions collaborated with The Bigger Picture, the Pediatric Leadership for the Underserved (PLUS) Program at the University of California San Francisco, and Youth Leadership Institute (YLI). The Bigger Picture has activated hundreds of high school students through arts-based education on the structural and environmental causes of type 2 diabetes, but they quickly recognized that their students don’t want to just identify problems; they want to solve problems. Pathways to Policy can help them do just that, providing guidance on next steps to make their communities healthier.

Download Pathways to Policy as well as useful handouts about the 10 steps of advocacy, the 3 branches of government, and examples on how to get support from parents and peers.