Offering indispensable advice to anyone seeking to integrate empowerment into their youth work, this guide demonstrates how youth leaders, teachers, peer program advisors, adults who work with teens and adolescents, and any professional organisation with a youth focus can foster leadership qualities in youth. Motivating examples are combined with activities, and reproducible self-assessment checklists to aid individuals and groups in evaluating their strengths and weaknesses in their efforts to empower youth.The tips included can be used in one-on-one situations, in groups, and in structured programs, and have been tested in varied circumstances, including youth programs, communities, classrooms, and faith-based organisations. The introduction outlines the Developmental Assets[registered] framework, and the four empowerment assets are discussed in detail. The importance of being valued by community, treating youth as a valued resource, service to others, and ensuring safety are examined, and ideas for cultivating an environment conducive to empowerment are also discussed.
Kelly Curtis, MS, is a school counselor, a writer, a speaker, and the founder of Empowering Youth, Inc., which publishes positive youth-development curricula. She lives in New Richmond, Wisconsin.