Changed By Youth Ambassador Program

The Changed by Youth Ambassador Program (CBY) is a new youth leadership opportunity from the Office on Youth (OOY). Building off the 15+ year legacy of the Durham Youth Commission, the CBY establishes a cohort of young people 16-24 who live, work, learn and play in Durham.


In 2005, Durham’s City Council established the Durham Youth Commission (DYC) in response to the advocacy efforts of young people in Durham, including Durham native DeWarren Langley. The DYC was created in an effort to give young people a formal role in the City’s planning and decision making processes; communicate issues, problems, and concerns with City officials and other youth; and engage in service learning projects and leadership opportunities.

For over 13 years, the DYC was managed by Evelyn Scott and was an active charter of the North Carolina State Youth Council. Members of the commission were appointed to boards and commissions, participated in hands-on community service projects, and were trained to understand the importance of public service, leadership, and advocacy.

Watch Bull City Today about the OOY and CBY:

Durham Youth Commission Photo Highlights

2021 Durham Y (4)
2021 Durham Y (6)

From DYC to CBY

During our Youth Listening Project, young people told us they wanted more opportunities to be leaders and decision makers in local government. The evolution to CBY is a direct response to what we heard; it’s also a response to the growing demand among City and County departments for youth engagement in their various projects. 

Ambassadors will be supported by the OOY to be part of planning and decision making processes in the City and County, and to ultimately influence programs and policies. They will receive ongoing racial equity and equitable community engagement training, which they will apply to their projects and their other engagements.

How the CBY Works

The OOY will recruit ten young people (16-24 years) to consult with City and County departments on different engagement, program, policy, and planning efforts. Ambassadors will serve one-year terms in a paid fellowship model, with a possibility to renew for one additional year. 

The OOY will support ambassadors in their roles by: offering various skill building opportunities; connecting ambassadors to key departments, officials, and community partners; and working directly with departments to clearly define the youth engagement strategies they’ll be using. 

Ambassadors will:

  1. Provide consultation to City and County Departments on various projects and policies
  2. Engage and inform other young people about local government opportunities
  3. Facilitate conversations and train adults, departments, and other youth in youth engagement and other topics
  4. Advocate for issues that matter to young people in Durham

The Commitment

  • Work with members of the OOY, other City and County departments, fellow ambassadors, and officials
  • Serve as an advisor and decision maker in various engagement, program, policy, and planning efforts 
  • Help promote City and County opportunities, and engage your peers and community in the work 
  • Participate in regular ambassador meetings and trainings 
  • Commit to approximately 17 hours/month between October 2021 and June 2022
  • Receive $15.50 per hour (up to $2800 per term)


  • Must live or learn in Durham 
  • Must be 16-24 years by January 2022
  • Experience in and comfortable working with a large (14+) team
  • Be a team player and considerate of the group
  • Committed to seeing youth in Durham thrive 
  • Available evenings and weekends
  • Has an understanding of how inequity and power show up in communities 
  • Become a City of Durham "Vendor" (involves some paperwork, we can help with that!)

Interested in being a Changed By Youth Ambassador?

The application period for the 2021-2022 cohort has ended. 

Please contact A’lice at A’[email protected] or call (984) 260-6703 

with any questions you may have about the ambassador program.