The Providers and Teens Communicating for Health (PATCH) Program is an innovative, youth-driven program working to improve adolescents' health and well-being across the nation. Wisconsin PATCH is made up of a collaboration of PATCH Sites from across the state and is part of the larger PATCH vision! We work in communities across Wisconsin to educate, engage, and empower young people to take control of their own health.
At PATCH, we believe that health care practices, programs, and policies should be developed with young people rather than just for them. After all, who could be better than teens at providing insight into the needs and desires of teens?!
Each of our programs is designed to ENGAGE, EDUCATE, and EMPOWER young people to raise their voices.
Through a powerful youth-adult collaboration, young people are trained to deliver workshops, participate in advocacy, and provide feedback to youth-related efforts throughout the state. Teen Educators and Youth Advocates involved in PATCH are paid for their time and expertise.
These young people gain life-changing information and develop necessary skills through a 24-hour training process and ongoing enrichment sessions. They use this knowledge to deliver peer education workshops and professional development for health care professionals, engage in community and state-wide initiatives, and advocate for better adolescent policies in schools, communities, and health systems.
As part of their employment, PATCH youth become expert presenters, powerful storytellers, and reliable resources for their peers. They are encouraged to take information gained through PATCH and participate in any number of health related advocacy efforts! For many, working as a PATCH Teen Educator or Youth Advocate allows them to find their voice, develop their story, and identify their passions.