What is Positive Youth Development?
Positive Youth Development (PYD) is both a philosophy and an approach to adolescent development. While there are several definitions of PYD, YouthPower Learning has defined it as follows:
Positive youth development engages youth along with their families, communities and/or governments so that youth are empowered to reach their full potential. PYD approaches build skills, assets and competencies; foster healthy relationships; strengthen the environment; and transform systems.
LEARN MORE ABOUT PYD
The Positive Youth Development Measurement Toolkit provides guidance and resources for implementers of youth programming in LMICs to integrate PYD principles in their monitoring and evaluation (M&E) systems and effectively measure PYD outputs and outcomes within their programs.
View the presentation from this USAID-led ‘mini-training’ that strengthens the basic understanding of Positive Youth Development approaches and explains how to incorporate these into workforce development project design, implementation, and monitoring and evaluation.
The Positive Youth Development 101 and 201 eCourses developed by USAID are designed for development practitioners who want to build their knowledge and skills. PYD 101 covers the fundamentals and PYD 201 takes that knowledge to the next level asking participants to apply their learning through a program design scenario.
In this toolkit, implementers of youth programming are provided a variety of references, resources, and tools on how to use a positive youth development (PYD) approach for evaluating youth-focused programming. A PYD approach to evaluation will measure whether youth are positively engaged in and benefiting from investments that ultimately empower them to develop in healthy and positive ways so that they can contribute to the development of their communities.
The main section of the toolkit discusses PYD constructs and illustrative indicators for implementers. We take readers step by step through a series of phases that utilize the PYD Framework (including the illustrative indicators) to demonstrate how youth programs can be optimally designed using a PYD approach, and how program staff can measure PYD-related outcomes in their program to to assess impact on youth.
Finally, this toolkit offers a series of considerations for adapting the indicators and measures to local contexts. Given that the PYD field has mostly been developed and evaluated in highincome countries, it is essential that these measures be appropriately and thoughtfully adapted to low- and middle-income country contexts to effectively evaluate youth programming in various sectors from a PYD perspective.
The purpose of this learning agenda is to define priority questions in the field of Positive Youth Development (PYD) in low and middle-income countries (LMICs). This PYD learning agenda builds upon the findings of the Systematic Review of PYD Programs in LMICs that highlighted gaps in the evidence for what works and for whom. The primary goal of the learning agenda is to provide collective guidance for a common agenda to address evidence gaps and invest in evidence-building activities related to PYD. This learning agenda also provide guidance for potential ways to answer those questions. The main audiences for the learning agenda are those who design, implement, and evaluate youth programs. While developed by YouthPower Learning with funding from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), anyone who works with youth in LMICs can respond to this learning agenda and advance the PYD field.
This USAID-led ‘mini-training’ was presented as a pre-summit session at the Global Youth Economic Opportunity Summit in 2016. It is geared to strengthen basic understanding of Positive Youth Development approaches and how to incorporate these into workforce development project design, implementation, and monitoring and evaluation. Participants also learned about opportunities to take a cross-sectoral approach when designing workforce programs.
Michael McCabe, Agency Youth Coordinator, USAID (USA)
Nancy Taggart, Senior Youth and Workforce Advisor, USAID (USA)
Amy Ucello, Technical Advisor, USAID (USA)
Taly Lind, Senior Advisor, Civil Society and Media, USAID/DRG (USA)
Kristin O'Planick, Market Systems & Enterprise Development Specialist, Bureau for Economic Growth, Education and Environment, USAID (USA)
Rachel Goldberg, Youth and Culture Advisor, Middle East Bureau, USAID (USA)
LEARN MORE ABOUT THE IMPACT OF PYD IN LOW- AND MIDDLE-INCOME COUNTRIES
A PYD approach to programming has been shown to have a positive impact across an array of outcomes and sectors in the United States and other high-income countries, including the areas of sexual and reproductive health, mental health, education, crime, and violence. Donors, governments, practitioners and policymakers are increasingly looking to this approach to provide more holistic support for youth in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). YouthPower Learning is leading the effort to apply and understand the impact of PYD in LMICs.
Early findings from the YouthPower Learning's PYD meta-review of peer-reviewed and grey literature to learn what PYD programming has been conducted in low- and middle-income countries, and to assess the evidence that PYD strategies work in this context can be found in a technical brief here.