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YMCA's Teen Action Agenda

NCJ Number
Date Published
May 2001
2 pages
The findings of a survey of 500 U.S. teens (ages 14-17) regarding their attitudes and behaviors in the after-school hours were used to develop the YMCA's Teen Action Agenda; this paper presents survey findings and describes program components.
In January 2001, the YMCA of the U.S.A. commissioned the After School for America's Teens survey. The survey found that teens who are unsupervised during the after-school hours of 3 to 6 p.m. are more likely to engage in risky behaviors -- such as drug and alcohol abuse, sexual activity, cigarette smoking, and carrying and using weapons -- than youth who are supervised by a parent or another adult, or who are involved in structured activities during those hours. In response to these findings, the YMCA has launched its Teen Action Agenda, a nationwide campaign to double the number of teens it serves through its after-school and other programs; this would involve 5 million youth by 2005. The program's goals are to build skills and values; improve teens' health practices, educational development, and character; help teens become contributing members of their communities; and place committed, caring adults in long-term relationships with the youth. Participating local YMCA's will offer programs that focus on three key areas: education, career, and life skills; health, safety, and well-being; and leadership and service learning. Each local YMCA chapter must offer at least one program in each of the key areas, dedicate a full-time program staff member to every 1,000 youth served, and issue a membership card to every teen served in the community. Each chapter will measure the success of its efforts and report the findings to the YMCA of the U.S.A.

Date Published: May 1, 2001