Motivating High Risk Youth Essay

2138 words - 9 pages

The definition of motivation according to Kennedy (2000), “[t]he internationalist view asserts that internal and external factors influence the change process From this perspective, motivation is seen as an interpersonal process that can be influenced in a positive way by the professional (para.18). A high-risk youth is defined as a male or female between the ages of 12-17 years old who has had some contact with the law or is at risk of becoming an offender. There is a lack of motivation in some high-risk youth to positively change their lives around. According to Stinson (2009), risk factors associated with juvenile delinquency include “poor academic performance, early childhood aggression, and hyperactivity; lack of parental involvement/interaction and inadequate parental supervision and monitoring; and community/environmental factors, including access to drugs and weapons, and lack of access to community resources due to poverty” (p. 11). At risk youth that engage in community based programs in Ridge Meadows, B.C. such as KidStart, Connex, Yardworks, Community Work Service, sports and leisure and counseling, are more successful later on in their young adulthood versus high risk youth who do not attend such programs. The KidStart program is a mentoring and one-on-one program that works with youth who are at-risk and experiencing difficulties in their lives. According to PLEA (2010), “[t]he primary objective of the program is to strengthen the young person's resilience to the risk factors that are known to lead to victimization, violence and criminal activities” (para. 1). Yardworks is a program that provides youth with work experience and life skills to allow them to enter the workforce and work alongside with a PLEA staff member (PLEA, 2010). Jobs that a youth might be doing is landscaping, painting and moving. Connex is an alternative to high school and is in partnership with the Ministry of Children and Families Development (MCFD), PLEA and School District 42 (PLEA, 2010). According to PLEA (2010), “Connex provides comprehensive support services to youth who are referred by their probation officers to access support services around academic curriculum, life skills, and recreational activities. We also work with youth and their families to reduce risk factors and increase their protective factors.” (para. 4). If youth become more involved in such programs it will also decrease their involvement with the ministry compared to if the youth had no involvement in programs because these programs encourage the youth to participate and that in turn will motivate the youth to make a positive change for their future. In addition, some recommendations to better engage and motivate youth to participate in such programs will be explored.
I: Gaining Social Responsibility, Self-Confidence and Self-esteem from Programs
Youth require a degree of motivation in order to achieve social responsibility, self-confidence and self-esteem. There was a survey...

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