Presentation on theme: "BUILDING A YOUTH DEVELOPMENT SYSTEM IN YOUR COMMUNITY John J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development Rutgers, the State University of NewJersey National."— Presentation transcript:
BUILDING A YOUTH DEVELOPMENT SYSTEM IN YOUR COMMUNITY John J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development Rutgers, the State University of NewJersey National Youth Employment Coalition Sar Levitan Center for Social Policy Studies Johns Hopkins University May 2000
2 Building a Youth Development System: An Overview Youth Development Concepts & Principles A Youth Development System Definition Menu of Services Essential Characteristics System-Building Processes & Strategies
3 Youth Development is... the process of moving from adolescence to adulthood. Positive youth development builds a young person’s cognitive, social, moral, emotional, physical and vocational competencies.
4 Youth Development has... a dual focus on building competencies for adulthood and meeting basic developmental needs for: Safety and structure Belonging and membership Self-worth and an ability to contribute Independence and control Several nurturing relationships Competence and mastery
5 Principles of Youth Development Communicate high expectations. Build a sense of group membership. Develop leadership ability. Foster a sense of personal identity. Broaden perspective; develop skills. Provide structure and safe surroundings.
6 Principles of Youth Development (cont’d) Focus on the centrality of work. Cultivate positive peer support. Connect youth with caring adults; maintain the continuity of contact. Offer sustained supports over an extended period of time.
7 A Youth Development System Definition Menu of Services Essential Characteristics
8 A Youth Development System is... a series of partnerships or connections among organizations to plan and deliver a menu of services based on youth development principles.
9 Youth Development System Menu of Services Learning options Work experience Skills development Leadership opportunities Counseling and support Connections to –Good jobs –Post-secondary education
10 Youth Development System Essential Characteristics Unified vision and strategic plan Active participation of youth in shaping the system Individual service strategy for each young person Coordinated access to all services A follow-up capacity Information sharing Effective case management system Accountability system with a continuous improvement mechanism
11 The Challenge How can community partners work together to build a youth development system?
12 First Steps 1. Recruit and convene the key stakeholders in the community 3 Build on previous, existing or evolving collaborative efforts, OR 3 Form a new group
13 First Steps 2. Garner political support. Work closely with: 3 Local elected officials 3 Municipal, county and state government organizations and agencies
14 First Steps 3. Create a shared vision 3Who are the youth to be served? 3What is the purpose of the youth service system? 3What does the system hope to accomplish?
15 First Steps 4. Collect and use data and information for decision-making 3What are the characteristics of the youth in the community? 3What do they want? What are their experiences?
16 First Steps 5. Map and assess community services and resources: Services: What services are currently provided? Who provides them? Where are they located? How effective are the services? What are the gaps in service? What is the capacity of the service providers?
17 First Steps 5. Map and assess community services and resources (con’t) : Resources: What are the total employment and training resources? What are the total resources? Who controls them? How flexible are the resources? Are there additional resource opportunities?
18 First Steps 6. Develop a strategic plan 3Identify the goals that will be met 3Develop strategies to achieve goals 3Create a timetable or action plan 3Articulate roles and responsibilities 3Establish accountability procedures
19 System-Building Techniques and Tips è Use the Youth Council as a community collaborative for leadership, planning, leveraging resources, implementation and oversight. è Keep all partners actively engaged. è Identify customized strategies for working with employers, the school system, and post-secondary institutions.
20 System-Building Techniques and Tips è Overcome “turf” issues and institutional barriers. è Clearly define partner roles. è Use existing resources creatively. è Provide consistent leadership. è Create a system of neighborhood hubs to reach out to and engage youth.
21 System-Building Techniques and Tips è Identify or develop an intermediary to work with employers. è Design and implement a capacity building strategy for technical assistance and provider development. è Build systems and relationships incrementally. è Think BIG…but start small…but START.
22 One Last Thought ………….. Always remember that the challenges you are facing are not more difficult than the lives of the many young people on whose behalf you are working. Karen Sitnick Baltimore Office of Employment