The Youth Activation Committee (YAC) is about activating youth to promote school communities where all young people are agents of change – fostering respect, dignity and advocacy for people with intellectual disabilities.

Wisconsin Youth Activation Committee (YAC) for Unified Champion Schools

Wisconsin Youth Activation Committee (YAC) for Unified Champion Schools is a select group of student athletes and partners, ages 13-21, from across the state that have demonstrated great leadership and compassion for Special Olympics athletes. They will serve as youth liaisons to the SOWI Unified Champion Schools Staff in planning and implementing Unified Champion Schools in schools and communities throughout the state. They will also play an important role in the planning and execution of the Youth Activation Summits.

Become a Member

The statewide Youth Activation Committee is currently accepting new members! If you believe you are qualified candidate and are interested becoming a committee member, please submit a completed application and two recommendations to Don Wigington at Applications will be accepted and reviewed until a full committee of 16 youth with and without intellectual disabilities has been reached.

What’s the schedule like?

The time commitment is based on the student’s dedication. On top of video calls twice a month and five in person meetings, YAC members will be expected to participate in activities within their school that support Unified Champion Schools programming. Some students will devote more time than others, but we expect everyone to contribute in a meaningful way. Each member is responsible for their own transportation to and from meetings and activities.

YAC members will have the opportunity to serve on other Special Olympics committees and boards. We want youth representation in everything we do!

What would I have to do?

The responsibilities of the position are also dependent on the committee member. The main role of a YAC member is to provide leadership to Special Olympics and Unified Champion Schools by participating in major Special Olympics events. They provide advice and counsel on strategies designed to reach other youth, engage in and promote Special Olympics activities in their home environments, communicate the initiatives of Special Olympics and Unified Champion Schools, network with other youth locally and statewide, and review Unified Champion Schools materials for innovation and practicality.

What is a Youth Activation Summit?

Any students in middle or high school are invited to attend the statewide Youth Activation Summits (YAS). A YAS is a summit of youth leaders from around the state, with and without intellectual disabilities, coming together to learn about youth leadership and social justice through Special Olympics sports and activities. Special Olympics Wisconsin aims to host two YAS each school year.

At the local level…

Each school is required to have a School Coordinating Team that lead Project UNIFY within their school.

School Coordinating Teams

School Coordinating Teams are comprised of one special education teacher, one general education teacher, one athlete, and one youth without an intellectual disability, as well as some involvement from a school administrator. This group of individuals’ works together to serve as project leaders for their school’s Project UNIFY programs.

For more information, contact

Krysten Kirsch – Director of Youth Initiatives
10224 N. Port Washington Rd.
Mequon, WI 53092
(262) 241-7786 ext. 13
(800) 924-5202

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