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Opportunity Youth: Disenfranchised Young People

Opportunity Youth: Disenfranchised Young People

success stories all

success stories all around the country we can learn from and emulate, many from the Opportunity Nation Coalition. These young adults are our future and deserve our urgent attention and investment. We all have a stake in helping the next generation meaningfully connect to education, the economy and civic life and restoring our promise as a land of opportunity. Page 20 of 72

II. Youth Empowerment Youth Empowerment is a process where children and young people are encouraged to take charge of their lives. They do this by addressing their situation and then take action in order to improve their access to resources and transform their consciousness through their beliefs, values, and attitudes. Youth empowerment aims to improve quality of life. Youth empowerment is achieved through participation in youth empowerment programs. However scholars argue that children’s rights implementation should go beyond learning about formal rights and procedures to give birth to a concrete experience of rights. There are numerous models that youth empowerment programs use that help youth achieve empowerment. A variety of youth empowerment initiatives are underway around the world. These programs can be through non-profit organizations, government organizations, schools or private organizations. Youth empowerment is different than youth development because development is centered on developing individuals, while empowerment is focused on creating greater community change relies on the development of individual capacity. Empowerment movements, including youth empowerment, originate, gain momentum, become viable, and become institutionalized. Youth empowerment is often addressed as a gateway to intergenerational equity, civic engagement and democracy building. Activities may focus on youth-led media, youth rights, youth councils, youth activism, youth involvement in community decision-making, and other methods. Empowerment Theory Elements of Empowerment Empowerment theory focuses on processes that enable participation; enhance control through shared decision making; and create opportunities to learn, practice, and increase skills. Empowerment theory suggests that engaging youth in pro-social, Page 21 of 72

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