Youth friendly/accessible language is helpful to all audiences. The Kids As Self Advocates project advocates for using accessible language because inaccessible language is often something that stops young people from being involved in leadership.
What Youth Friendly/Accessible Language means:
Using youth friendly/accessible language means that all people, including young people and people with disabilities, understand the information that is being shared.
What Youth Friendly/Accessible Language Does NOT Mean:
Accessibility in a Presentation
There are many different ways to make presentations accessible to people with a variety of disabilities. A presenter should not worry about trying to figure out what everyone in the room can or cannot do. Instead they should focus on sharing their information in as many different ways as possible.
Ideas to Use:
Helpful Hints: When trying to put something in youth friendly/accessible language, just try to be as clear as possible. Ask a young person to review materials, or offer to go through the materials with to them to make sure the materials are clear and that they think others will also understand.
When giving a presentation, be sure to assume that the young people and people with disabilities have experience with the topic, just as a presenter would assume of any non-disabled person/adult in the room.
Examples of Using Youth Friendly/Accessible Language
“Today we are here to learn effective tools in advocating for health care.”
Youth friendly/accessible language: Today we are here to learn useful ways to share our opinions and experiences about how healthcare affects us and our community, by talking to those who make decisions about healthcare.
“Formalize structure and membership of committee”
Youth friendly/accessible language: Figure out and agree on who will be involved and how the committee will be structured [who will make decisions, how will decisions be made, how the committee will work].
“Develop outreach materials to recruit participants and distribute via email.” Youth friendly/accessible language: Put together [create] announcements and flyers to find people who want to be involved in our work and then send these out over email.