This past fall, students from Amesbury, Georgetown, Newbury, Rowley, Salisbury and Newburyport took the Attitudes and Behavior Survey. The survey measured the number of supports youth have to help them thrive and potential risk behaviors. The data from this survey helps us understand strengths and needs of young people in our communities and in the region.
Youth representing each of these towns came together in February to be the first to review the survey results. Participants were taught about the 40 Developmental Asset® framework, the positive youth development model, and were asked to share their ideas about how youth and adults can work together to create more opportunities, supports and connections between youth and the community. They came away from the experience feeling that their voices were heard and that they could make a positive impact in their community. “All communities have similar problems and we need to work together to make a change…I have the power to make change,” commented one participant.
Following this event, the participants will meet to create a presentation that will be given in each community in early April. All community members will be invited to attend. This will be the first opportunity for each community to hear the regional results of the survey from the youth themselves. Attendees will have the opportunity to discuss next steps and future opportunities.
This event was hosted by the Essex County Asset Builder (ECAB) Network. This Network is a new initiative that joins together the communities of Amesbury, Georgetown, Newbury, Rowley, Salisbury and Newburyport to help develop leadership, problem-solving, and social engagement skills for young people. Having these skills can encourage healthy decision making and promote positive social change.
Keep an eye out for announcement about the presentation in your community. For more information about the presentations, 40 Developmental Assets®, and the Essex County Asset Builder Network visit www.ecabnetwork.org.