The QYD Benchmarks
1. Welcoming, inclusive, and accessible space in the community for any youth to gather safely when out of school.
2. Funding by the community in support of youth programs.
3. A professional youth-mentoring program serving the community.
4. An elected community youth council, consisting of high school age students that will advise the community on issues directly and indirectly related to youth – and encourage youth to serve the community.
5. “Youth Are Welcome!” messaging posters displayed by downtown businesses.
6. The engagement of youth as members of the Board of Directors of local non-profits providing services to youth. VII. Youth access to social services and resources outside of a school setting.
7. Youth access to social services and resources outside of a school setting.
8. An annual youth conference or legislative forum for middle and high school students.
9. Effective recruitment of young people for local community-wide committees. X. Creation of internship/employment opportunities for youth in local government and businesses.
10. Creation of internship/employment opportunities for youth in local government and businesses.
The QYD Project™ is a new credentialing process that measures the achievement of 10 Benchmarks by a village/town/city/region in order for it to become certified as a “QYD Community.” Achievement of this credential will demonstrate that a community is actively promoting youth engagement and youth empowerment – which have proven to be essential elements of any effective positive youth development strategy.
QYD is an acronym for “Quality Youth Development,” which is defined here as “substantive, measurable, and sustainable community actions that support, engage, inspire, and empower youth.” The attainment of this credential will become the quality standard that other communities will seek to achieve in order to retain youth in their communities and to attract residents, businesses, and employees. Inspired by and aligned with the Search Institute’s 40 Developmental Assets model, this will be the first credentialing effort in the United States that promotes, measures, and acknowledges a community’s commitment to youth in this manner.
Become a QYD Community™
Are you interested in creating a welcoming environment for youth in your community?
Start the QYD Project™ in your town, village, city, or area! Get a committee together, complete seven of the ten benchmarks and celebrate your QYD Community™!