Information for Students
Thank you. You have helped me get my life back. I hope you realize
how important what you do is and that you continue your work.
-Client, Children and Youth Advocacy Clinic
What’s Unique about CAYAC?
Students in CAYAC provide interdisciplinary, holistic advocacy on behalf of children and youth in foster care. CAYAC operates on the belief that policy change needs to be rooted in the lessons learned in individual representation of clients.
CAYAC provides students with two unique clinical opportunities. In the Youth Advocacy Clinic students represent young people in the foster care system on a full-range of issues that affect their well-being. In the Legislative Policy Clinic students work with the Juvenile Section of the Washington Bar Association on policy issues before the legislature that affect CAYAC’s clients. They see the legislature in action and become experts in issues that affect children and youth in the child welfare system.
In order to competently represent youth or advocate for policy change, CAYAC students learn to research information across the disciplines of law, social work, psychology and medicine. They learn the language of other disciplines in order to communicate and advocate effectively across all of the professions engaged in child advocacy work.
Substantive Practice Area:
- Holistic representation of children and youth in foster care or abuse & neglect proceedings
- In the course of representing young people in foster care, CAYAC students have practiced in the substantive areas of education law, mental health law, immigration law, family law, and juvenile defense.
Where We Practice:
- Youth Advocacy Clinic:
- King County Juvenile and other Superior Courts
- Immigration proceedings in pursuit of Special Immigrant Juvenile Status
Legislative Policy Clinic:
- Washington State Legislature
Represent children & youth in:
- Dependency matters
- Educational advocacy
- Juvenile defense
- Family law
- Immigrant juvenile status issues
- Client interviewing and counseling, working primarily with adolescents
- Interdisciplinary work with teams of professionals
- Motion practice
- Alternative dispute resolution, including family group conferencing