I am going through notes from workshops over the last few years. One of the questions I ask in youth involvement workshops is What pitfalls are there to youth involvement? Following are several of the answers that have been shared repeatedly over more than a dozen workshops with hundreds of adults across the country.

  • Potential to get off topic
  • Increase in upfront planning time
  • More time needed for ongoing operations, including reflection
  • Additional time to plan with youth needed for staff
  • Difficult to find planning time that works for youth
  • Stigmas about youth involvement
  • Adultism manifesting itself as tension between youth and adults
  • Adults not sensitive to youth readiness for involvement
  • Adults uncomfortable with youth involvement
  • Adults not wanting youth to be involved
  • Youth fearful of formal meeting setting
  • Youth who manipulate the planning processes
  • Youth involvement becomes negative
These are the repeating patterns – let’s see what comes out of the anomalies next.
Written by Adam Fletcher, this article was originally posted to http://commonaction.blogspot.com. Learn more at adamfletcher.net!
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I'm a writer, trainer, speaker, and consultant. My work focuses on helping schools, nonprofits, and government agencies become more effective at engaging people.

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