Youth Development

We believe more Detroit youth will graduate from high school prepared for adulthood if they engage in high-quality youth development opportunities outside of the school day.

All kids should have access to programming that helps them develop personal skills and discover who they are. Whether kids take part in sports programs or leadership development, one thing matters: that those programs deliver results.

We use a tool called the ACT (Achieve-Connect-Thrive) Framework to guide our work. This framework takes the best knowledge from educational and developmental psychology and has identified the most important skill sets for kids to develop to excel in college and careers. 

  • The Achieving domain refers to the skill sets necessary for youth to achieve academically and, specifically, develop the literacy and math proficiencies of youth within our neighborhoods. 
  • The Connecting domain refers to relationship skills that help students develop supportive relationships.
  • The Thriving domain refers to perseverance, self efficacy, and the resilience necessary for youth to maintain the effort to succeed.

In our youth development work, we invest in partners who can help us:

  • Build the necessary infrastructure for a coordinated youth development system
  • Embed mechanisms to ensure accountability and capacity for quality and scale
  • Build public will for youth development

The youth development work has three components: