Key Dates

JUN 2023

  • June 30: applications due


  • Selected CBOs register as WPP providers
  • Orientation and program planning with selected CBOs
  • Youth advocate recruitment and matching

SEP 2023-JUN 2024

  • Paid work experience for youth advocates at CBOs
  • Academy training, coaching, and support for youth advocates and CBOs


You can email
[email protected]

Youth Mental Health Advocate

Pilot Program

The Youth Mental Health Advocate pilot will equip young people with skills to provide culturally responsive mental health support to other youth. Between September 2023-June 2024, this program will fund 25 part-time youth advocates to work in youth-serving community organizations across NYC. The Academy will provide training, coaching, and support to the youth advocates and their host organizations.


The Academy and partners will pilot a Youth Mental Health Advocate model that can be implemented in NYC community-based organizations.


The Youth Mental Health Advocate program is part of Working the Gap, a collaboration between the CUNY SPS Youth Studies program and the Academy. Working the Gap offers applied skills training, paid work experience, and college level courses to young people ages 17-24 who have completed high school or a GED and are not currently enrolled in college.

The Youth Mental Health Advocate program is made possible by funding and support from the Mayor’s Office for Economic Opportunity and HRA Work Progress Program.

Working the Gap and the Youth Mental Health Advocate program also receive funding from the Carroll and Milton Petrie Foundation and Summerfield Foundation.


Funding is available for a total of 25 advocates to work 15 hours/week between Sep 2023-Jun 2024 at the rate of $20/hour. HRA’s Work Progress Program (WPP) will reimburse youth service providers for wages paid to the youth mental health advocates.

We seek organizations who will invest in the personal and professional development of the youth advocates, including by fully onboarding and integrating them into your program or team, providing them with opportunities to learn, and offering consistent supervision and support.


Applications for the 2023-2024 Youth Mental Health Advocate pilot program are now closed.


Erin Baer