I recently visited Young Advisors in Manchester, U.K. I had a great time and learned a lot about Young Advisors in general and about the work done by teams in Knowsley and Sefton. Young Advisors act as paid "social action consultants," providing a variety of services designed to provide young people's perspective on issues, programs, services and events that affect them.
The work done by the Sefton and Knowsley groups includes, among many other projects, consultation and workshops for a local workforce development department on the use of social networking, providing feedback on a new curriculum in the "centers for learning" that replaced local schools, awarding funds across England to young people learning media skills, making recommendations to local councilors about how to make their meetings more interesting and accessible to young people, developing workshops for young people designed to raise awareness and understanding of mental illness, getting out the vote for the U.K. Youth Parliament, and providing young people's perspectives on "Section 30," a law that allows the police to disperse groups of more than two people--a law that many young people believe is disproportionately and unjustly applied to them.
This is an excellent model for youth participation. Take a look!