NYC Youth Leadership Councils

NYC Youth Leadership Councils (YLCs) are a network of youth groups focused on policy, practice, and advocacy to make local change happen.

Each YLC is a space to team up with others, share ideas, create solutions, and put those solutions into action with the support from City agencies, schools, and community organizations. 

Find a YLC and apply now.


Your voice can make a difference in your community.

YLC members create solutions for:

  • Advocating for mental health support and resources
  • Preventing gun violence in communities
  • Influencing citywide environmental sustainability awareness initiatives
  • Encouraging nutritious diets and healthy lifestyles
  • Connecting youth to digital resources for research and advocacy
  • Using art as a tool for social action
  • And more!

For a full list of active YLCs and the issues they’re working on, visit the YLC Application.

Reasons why others have joined YLCs:

  • To learn how to influence their neighborhood and city
  • To gain insight into college and career opportunities
  • To get community service hours for school or their resume
  • To develop professional and life skills
  • To gain more confidence in communicating ideas
  • To meet similar people from different neighborhoods across NYC
  • To receive a certificate signed by the mayor to include in their resume


Hear from Clive, a Youth Leader.

How to Apply

Find out the requirements for joining a YLC and the simple steps you can take to apply.

Who’s Eligible

You can apply to a YLC if you’re between ages 14 and 21 and currently enrolled in high school or an equivalency program.

The Application

Applying is easy! You can discover which YLC(s) to join, fill out your application information, and attach additional files using one simple form.

Helpful tips to apply:

  • Read the description of YLCs by selecting them from the YLC dropdown
  • Apply to up a maximum of three YLCs
  • If you want to save and finish the application later, follow the instructions at the “Save and Resume Later; link at the bottom of the form

Apply Now




Find a Youth Leadership Council near you
No matter what you’re passionate about, you can find a YLC that will help you turn your ideas into action. View a map on GenNYC to find YLCs near you.

You can also find this map on the online application


YLC Spotlight


Get deep into food systems, environmental advocacy, and green jobs at a garden near you this summer. Learn more about the Green Thumb Youth Leadership Council.

Brooklyn Public Library

Plan, research, implement, and evaluate BPL's largest teen event of the year, Urban Art Jamm. Learn more about the BPL Youth Leadership Council.


We're here to help!

If you have any questions or need to get in touch, email NYC Service at