The Center for Native American Youth is dedicated to improving the health, safety and overall well-being of Native American youth through communication, policy development and advocacy.
Founded by former US Senator Byron Dorgan, CNAY is a policy program within the Aspen Institute, headquartered in Washington, DC. While a part of the Aspen Institute, CNAY is also overseen by a Board of Advisors. The goal of CNAY is to bring greater national attention to the issues facing Native American youth, and to foster solutions, with special emphasis on youth suicide prevention.
The Center for Native American Youth fulfills its mission through four priority strategies: youth inspiration, advocacy, policy change, and serving as a resource platform. In order to address the needs and improve the social and physical well-being of Native youth CNAY aspires to develop meaningful partnerships with tribal governments and organizations. The work of tribal leaders and organizations has been critical to the advancement of Native youth, and continues to be essential to further progress. CNAY works to substantially increase the dialogue between Native youth, tribal leaders, advocacy organizations, academic institutions and other experts by hosting summits and roundtables throughout Indian Country.