Through a four-year SAMHSA System of Care (SOC) grant, Vaya is expanding services and access to care for families and youth with mental, behavioral or emotional disorders in five counties.
The emphasis on youth involvement is a standout aspect of the grant. Kelby Trejo, a youth advocate on the grant governance board, is already using his platform to make a difference.
“Growing up in the community, we don’t have many opportunities to make choices on our own,” said Kelby. “I want to be able to advocate for youth and make them feel like they can be heard so we can aid them in all areas of their lives, whether it be education, health, employment, or relationships.”
According to Kelly Wolf, Vaya’s System of Care Director, having youth advocates on the governance board is vital to the program’s success. And according to Kelby, it’s a powerful platform for affecting change.