North County Outlook - Community newspaper serving Marysville, Arlington, Tulalip, Smokey Point, Lakewood

Applicants sought for youth councils


The city of Arlington and town of Darrington are seeking youth in grades 8-12 (2016-2017 school year) to apply to become members of the Arlington Youth Council or the Darrington Youth Council.

Each Council will consist of seven youth who reside in the Arlington School District or have an Arlington address; or reside in the Darrington School District or have a Darrington address. Members will serve a term of one school year, September-June. For the first year, regular meetings will be held twice a month. Arlington meeting times will be the 2nd and 4th Thursdays at 4 p.m. Darrington’s times are yet to be determined. Staff and volunteers will support the Youth Councils.

Will Nelson, Weston High School principal, and Sarah Lopez, city of Arlington staff, will be supporting the Arlington Youth Council. “This is the perfect opportunity and venue for the youth in our community to learn about and get involved in our local government.  The Arlington Youth Council gives a voice to our youth,” said Principal Nelson.

Jana Ferris, Associate Professor, WSU Extension Youth and Family County Director, is coordinating a joint retreat with Darrington and Arlington Youth Councils to kick off the project. She has extensive knowledge in managing youth council organizations.

Arlington Youth Council is an equitable voice with diverse representation from students in 8th-12th grade in the Arlington community. There is a simple application followed by a selection and interview process. To apply, please visit Arlington’s website at or Arlington City Hall 238 N. Olympic Avenue; and at Darrington Town Hall, 1005 Cascade Street. If you have any questions, please call city of Arlington, Sarah Lopez at 360-403-3448 or town of Darrington, Raelyn Jones at 360-436-1131.

Developing a Youth Council in Arlington and Darrington is Strategy 3.1 of the Arlington-Darrington Community Revitalization Plan, America’s Best Communities. The purpose of the Youth Council is to advise the mayor and city council in all matters related to and affecting the youth in our community and to provide youth perspectives on community issues. The Youth Council is structured to create an essential link among our area’s teens, the community, and city government.

“One critical component of community and workforce development is supporting the youth of today to become the leaders of tomorrow. Smaller rural communities frequently lose their young people as they move out of the area to pursue higher education and entry-level careers, resulting in a ‘brain drain’ of talent needed to sustain a vibrant local economy. This strategy establishes youth councils in both Arlington and Darrington that will focus on issues of interest to youth leaders by integrating young people into the political process and equipping them with the skills and resources to address these problems. The objective is to encourage young people to make meaningful contributions to their respective communities and the region as a whole through the creation of autonomous youth councils in Arlington and Darrington. Ultimately, the intent is to give them a sense of investment and a bond that will promote the Stillaguamish Valley as a place where they can grow professionally in the future,” from Arlington-Darrington Community Revitalization Plan, America’s Best Communities.


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