162677 Youth/Adult Collaborations: Fostering Resiliency by Involving Youth

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Laurie Jo Wallace, MA , Training and Capacity Building, The Medical Foundation, Boston, MA
Moacir Barbosa , City of Cambridge, Men of Color Task Force, Cambridge, MA
Meghan Wagner, MS, MEd , Training and Capacity Building, Health Communications, The Medical Foundation, Boston, MA
Involving youth in community health initiatives is a key element to successfully reaching adolescents with public health messages. Adults supporting youth in youth peer educator programs and other youth focused programs work collaboratively with youth to prevent disease and promote community health through youth-to-youth and intergenerational education, advocacy, and participation in community events. Viewing youth as resources and creating a protective environment to foster resiliency are essential to keeping youth involved is a youth development approach. Some of the challenges facing adults are recruiting youth, advocating for youth within the agency, training other adults to work with youth, crisis intervention and building relationships with diverse young people. Youth workers (a sub-set of Community Health Workers) are the adults advocating for youth and facing these challenges. They need training in setting personal boundaries, intervention and referral techniques, youth supervision, program evaluation, training skills, group facilitation, team building and cultural competence. Working with programs in many communities, schools and residential settings for the past 15 years the authors have developed strategies to support successful youth/adult collaborations. This presentation will review mechanisms for involving youth in community health initiatives, especially ones targeted for youth.

Learning Objectives:
1. Identify strategies for involving youth in decision-making, environmental strategies and advocacy, and program planning and implementation. 2. Identify strategies for training adults and youth workers (a sub-set of Community Health Workers) to view youth as resources

Keywords: Youth, Prevention

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Any relevant financial relationships? No
Any institutionally-contracted trials related to this submission?

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.