Young People as Community Builders

Barry Checkoway & J.Finn
January 1, 1992

What are the themes and core practices common throughout a national sample of community-based youth initiatives? What stands out is the importance of incorporating cross-cutting strategies into youth-focused initiatives: insist on meaningful youth involvement across phases; establish the mutual benefits and relevance to the young people and the community; support growth in more than one developmental area; link community-based delivery of the array of services in a comprehensive manner and build relationships across generational lines.
Learning environments inside of successful initiatives are structured to encourage young people to make contributions while gaining practical knowledge of “real world” issues and to make connections to the people and places in their communities. This report provides nine case studies of initiatives selected for analysis based on how well they promote planning and participation at the community level.