LEWISTON — For the first time, Youth MOVE Maine joined colleagues and 1,600 federally-funded System of Care partners from across the United States at an annual Community Training conference in Chicago to celebrate efforts to improve services for youth in mental health, juvenile justice and child welfare systems.

“It is great to connect with the national movement and with other states because we learn from each other and can effect change on a larger scale,” said Ryun Anderson, Youth MOVE Maine coordinator, who has on office on Canal Street.

Anderson and four staffers said that over the past year Youth MOVE Maine has expanded from its core of young people in Lewiston to start groups and trainings for youth ages 14-25 in the midcoast, Kennebec Valley and southern Maine, with a northern region to start in October.

The state chapter’s flagship group in Lewiston has 12 youth connected with the federal initiative Moving Forward working to improve housing, behavioral health services and employment opportunities, while taking cooking and other life skills classes.

Youth MOVE Maine, a state chapter of Youth Move National, supports youth and adults in building the skills, partnerships, policies and practices essential to making sure all youth are connected, resilient, growing and included in the decisions that impact their lives.

MOVE stands for Youth Motivating Others through Voices of Experience.

To get in touch with a Youth MOVE Maine resource specialist, go to www.youthmovemaine.org

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