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Berry Street’s Y-Change initiative is a social and systemic change platform for young people with lived experiences of socioeconomic disadvantage. As Lived Experience Consultants, the team challenge the thinking and practices of wider social systems through advocacy and leadership.

As part of this advocacy, the Y-Change team made a policy submission to the Victorian Youth Strategy called 'Beyond Giving Voice: Partnering with young people with a lived experience to imagine and create radical change'.

This submission puts the lived experiences and expertise of young people at its centre.

10 recommendations for change

The submission makes 10 recommendations, each one supported by tangible actions that the team want to see, to create a future where all young Victorians can thrive.

The recommendations are:

  1. Move beyond giving voice
  2. Share your institutional power, help us build our own toolboxes
  3. Educate young people on what matters (to us)
  4. Support us to break patterns of intergenerational trauma
  5. Uphold and protect our human rights
  6. Imagine and design services with us, not for us
  7. Enable our agency and autonomy
  8. Offer us the same access as other kids
  9. Build accessibility in from the start, not as an afterthought
  10. Partner with us to create equitable and safer systems.

The underpinning message is the importance of embedding lived experience-led approaches to realise service system and cultural transformation.

More information

For an overview of Y-Change’s submission and recommendations, read the snapshot document (PDF 3,499 KB)

Read Y-Change’s full submission to the Victorian Youth Strategy (PDF 7,100 KB)