The Vermont Youth Center Alliance (VYCA) was established in 2018. It built on the momentum and work of a previous group called the Vermont Coalition of Teen Centers that existed in Vermont from 1993 until the early 2010s. There continues to be a lot of innovative work happening in the field of youth work, but not a lot of sharing going on. So VYCA was established to serve as a connection point for youth-serving professionals who can often feel isolated in their work and even within their communities.

VYCA’s Vision:

The Vermont Youth Center Alliance (VYCA) anticipates a Vermont where all youth have access to safe, inclusive, non-judgemental people and places to go outside of their home or school where their thoughts are valued, their opinions are respected, and they are treated with dignity.

VYCA’s Mission:

To promote the healthy development of Vermont youth by:

  • Organizing a network for current and developing youth centers in VT in order to deliver support, establish partnerships, and neutralize isolation of youth center/service workers.
  • Educating communities & ourselves about the existence and importance of youth centers across the state in order to build more sustainable youth center programs.
  • Advocating as a cohesive group in order to advance the mutual concerns of Vermont youth centers.

VYCA meets monthly via Zoom. The group discusses the practices as well as the underlying philosophy of running a youth center. We share resources, expertise, and educate and support one another. Doing drop-in based youth work, especially for many of our more rural programs in the state can feel isolating, but VYCA creates a space where program leaders and staff can come together to build community. Members are also in touch via an email list where the conversation can continue in between our monthly meetings. To sign up for the email list head to this link or contact Sam Graulty with any other questions (sam@nullvermontafterschool.org). 

If you’re interested in learning more about some of the topics that have been covered by VYCA in the past, check out this archive of the previous meeting topics and notes and also this collection of blog posts that summarize some of the themes that have been covered. 

Starting a youth center?

Check out our Youth Center Program Start-up Guide. It contains an overview of the benefits of youth centers and covers the process through which a community can begin establishing a youth center in their area.

Where are Vermont’s Youth Centers?

Click on each icon to learn more.

Know of a center that isn’t listed here? Have one of their leaders or representatives fill out this form.