Please note: Entries within this blog may contain references to instances of domestic abuse, dating abuse, sexual assault, abuse or harassment. At all times, Break the Cycle encourages readers to take whatever precautions necessary to protect themselves emotionally and psychologically.  If you would like to speak with an advocate, please contact a 24/7 peer advocate at 866-331-9474  or text "loveis" to 22522.

How Our Youth Leaders Create Brighter Futures

melissa-siegel-nyab

As adult allies, we work with youth to help them build healthy relationships, we work to provide much needed help services but most importantly we work to empower youth to become today’s change to stand up and speak out and that is exactly what these amazing young people are doing.

The National Youth Advisory Board (NYAB) for loveisrespect, the partnership between Break the Cycle and the National Domestic Violence Hotline, works year round preparing and planning for February's teenDVmonth. Each board member receives training on how to raise awareness in their community online and offline. From school health fairs, community walks, candlelight vigils, art galas, poetry slams and PSA’s, the board brings the topic of healthy relationships to their peers and inspires others to get involved to make a difference.

This week one of our NYAB members Melissa Siegel Barrios appeared on the FOX: 46 Good Day Carolinas morning show with a survivor of teen dating violence to speak out and share resources and Respect Week events happening in her community. Melissa has been on the board since 2011 and now works to share what she has learned as an advocate with members of the Teen Dating Violence Awareness Committee and Forward Youth Group for Mecklenburg County.

We want to give a big shout out to all youth who use their voice to spread awareness. Take a look at their awesome interview and help us recognize how far this movement has come over the years by taking action.

Don’t forget each Friday during February we’ll highlight the work of a young person creating change. Learn more on our Fan Friday section.