The Future of Youth Engagement

Society evolves. As young people and communities grow, there are more opportunities for youth engagement than ever before – and more opportunities for youth to become disengaged, too. More sophisticated usages of technology, transformed processes, and varying thresholds for what engages young people have to be acknowledged all the time. This happens from generation toContinue reading “The Future of Youth Engagement”

What Is Youth Engagement?

Youth engagement happens when young people have sustained connections anywhere in their life. Youth engagement can happen throughout the lives of children and youth, including within themselves, in the immediate world around them, throughout society in general, and across the entirety of the world. The sustained connections they make can be emotional, psychological, or cognitiveContinue reading “What Is Youth Engagement?”

How Does Youth Engagement Happen?

“Engaged youth” are generally labeled that way because they are experiencing sustained connections in ways that adults approve or acknowledge. These young people are typically identified in places like schools, nonprofit youth programs, and athletic programs. Their engagement is generally awarded by adults with incentives, including good grades, certifications of participation, and varsity letters. “DisengagedContinue reading “How Does Youth Engagement Happen?”

Why Does Youth Engagement Happen?

There are several factors that make youth engagement happen. However, today’s popular forms of youth engagement generally don’t acknowledge those factors. Whether or not a young person is going to become engaged is determined by three things: the social and economic environment  the physical environment, and  the person’s individual characteristics and behaviors  The ways youngContinue reading “Why Does Youth Engagement Happen?”

Where Does Youth Engagement Happen?

Youth engagement happens in a variety of places. Each place where youth engagement happens isn’t necessarily a physical place or a set of activities. Because of this, I call these “Spheres of Youth Engagement.” Youth Engagement can happen within a person, including their emotional, psychological, or physical well-being. In other cases, young people are seenContinue reading “Where Does Youth Engagement Happen?”

What Supports Youth Engagement?

All the individual spheres of youth engagement are parts of a generally unspoken system. This system surrounds all young people from the time they’re born through adulthood, and beyond. A system is “a set of connected things or parts forming a complex whole, in particular.” Systems of youth engagement are the broad ways young peopleContinue reading “What Supports Youth Engagement?”

The Freechild Project Publications

You know The Freechild Project offers training for youth workers, educators, and young people. Did you know we publish our own materials too? We have dozens of booklets, articles, worksheets, and other tools available to help you learn and teach others about youth voice, youth engagement, social change led by young people, and more.  FollowingContinue reading “The Freechild Project Publications”

Youth Voice EVERYWHERE!

As any expression of any young person about anything, anywhere, at any time, Youth Voice happens in countless places in every community every day. This includes schools, businesses, alleys, sidewalks, libraries, city halls, government agencies, afterschool programs, summer camps, foundations, nonprofits, community centers, at home, on the streets, and in parks. Youth Voice happens inContinue reading “Youth Voice EVERYWHERE!”

21st Century Community Learning Centers

This week I’m facilitating two sessions at Washington State’s 21st Century Community Learning Centers conference. Its an annual event held in different locations across the state, with it being in Ellensburg this year. I have presented at several states’ conferences in the past, and I’m excited to be here again this year, too. My twoContinue reading “21st Century Community Learning Centers”