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Youth-Adult Partnerships in Public Action: Principles, Organizational Culture and Outcomes

Issue Brief
November 6, 2008
 
The Forum partnered with the University of Wisconsin’s Center for Nonprofits to publish Youth-Adult Partnerships in Public Action: Principles, Organizational Culture and Outcomes. This study focuses on how organizations translate principles of youth engagement into practice and build a culture of partnership, as well as the outcomes – for young people, institutions and communities – that can result when they do. The research focuses on two organizations, Austin Voices for Education and Youth and Oasis Community IMPACT in Nashville, TN, but the lessons can help any organization committed to meaningful youth engagement advance their efforts in concrete ways.

The case studies described in this report underscore the critical role that community-based organizations can play both in developing young people’s leadership abilities and driving positive community change. Specifically, the authors push beyond principles, identifying effective organizational and management practices that can help any organization committed to meaningful youth engagement advance their efforts in concrete ways. Additionally, the outcomes they identify present a useful impact framework for much-needed future program evaluation and research efforts.

Documenting the outcomes that organizations like those featured in this report can achieve – with the young people who participate and the adults, institutions and communities they work with – is critical to ensuring further investment and innovation.

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