What Adults Call Pitfalls

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!

Published by Adam

For almost two decades, Adam F. C. Fletcher has led international outreach focused on engaging people successfully. Working with thousands of youth-serving nonprofits, K-12 schools, government agencies, international NGOs and other organizations around the world, his work spans the fields of education, public health, economic development and social services, and includes professional development, public speaking, publishing, social media and more. He founded the Freechild Institute for Youth Engagement, SoundOut and CommonAction, as well as writing more than 50 publications and 500 articles. He has also established 150-plus community empowerment projects.

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