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Youth and Family Partnerships Resource Library

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About the Youth and Family Partnerships Resource Library


Youth and Family Partnerships


DataData Snapshot: What Young People Say Matters
The Performance‐based Standards Learning Institute surveyed more than 1,100 young people exiting secure facilities, community residential programs and community supervision between November 2021 and April 2022. This data snapshot shares the perceptions of young people regarding their preparedness and readiness for reentry.
Government ResourcesGame Plan for Engaging Youth | Youth.gov
The Game Plan for Engaging Youth summarizes ideas for engaging young people in promoting their health and healthy development.
Government ResourcesAssessing Youth Involvement and Engagement | Youth.gov
To ensure that youth are actively engaged, programs should regularly assess youth involvement and engagement. This online assessment tool can assist organizations and community partnerships in determining how they involve youth in programs, whether youth are becoming more engaged in the community, and if certain strategies are helping to retain youth.
Government ResourcesInvolving Youth in Positive Youth Development | Youth.gov
This webpage includes suggested steps for organizations to consider when trying to engage young people and ensure the experience is meaningful for the youth as well as for the program.
Government ResourcesFamily Engagement | Youth.gov
This website offers comprehensive resources for organizations about family engagement, including definitions and approaches to engaging families as partners in the decision-making and system improvement, the impacts of family engagement, components of family engagement, and information about policies, strategies, and special populations.
Government ResourcesFamily Engagement Inventory | Childwelfare.gov
This inventory by the Children's Bureau of the Administration for Children and Families promotes and supports successful cross-discipline collaboration among agencies that often serve the same families simultaneously. The inventory indicates common strategies across five disciplines: child welfare, juvenile justice, behavioral health, education, and early childhood education.
Government ResourcesYouth Engagement at the Federal Level: A Compilation of Strategies and Practices | Youth.gov
This report is a compilation of youth engagement efforts by 12 agencies and departments. It details the accomplishments and basic mechanisms of these strategies, but also notes the barriers, challenges, and vision for the future. 
Reports & BriefsHarris, B., Keator, K., Vincent-Roller, N., & Keefer, B. (2017). Engage, involve, empower: family engagement in juvenile drug treatment courts. Delmar, NY: National Center for Mental Health and Juvenile Justice. https://www.ojp.gov/library/publications/engage-involve-empower-family-engagement-juvenile-drug-treatment-courts
Reports & BriefsEngaging Young People With Lived Experience in the CFSRs: Key Considerations, Roles, and Recommendations
Through a series of focus groups, 18 young people with self-identified lived child welfare experience were asked about the best methods of recruiting, engaging, supporting, and retaining young people. This brief summarizes the results of the focus groups and discusses key considerations, roles, and recommendations for states when engaging young people. 
Reports & BriefsFamily Engagement in Juvenile Drug Court: Lessons Learned
Based on findings of the National Cross-Site Evaluation of Juvenile Drug Courts and Reclaiming Futures (JDC/RF National Cross-Site Evaluation), which assessed the implementation and impacts of five JDC/RF pilot sites, this report outlines lessons learned for ways to improve such programs' engagement with the families of youth participants. 
Reports & BriefsFamilies Unlocking Futures: Solutions to the Crisis in Juvenile Justice
This report presents the perspective of families who are uniquely affected by the juvenile justice systems that can determine the future of their children.
Reports & Briefs Methods and Emerging Strategies to Engage People with Lived Experience Improving Federal Research, Policy, and Practice
This brief identifies methods and emerging strategies to engage people with lived experience in federal research, programming, and policymaking. It draws on lessons learned from federal initiatives across a range of human services areas to identify ways that federal staff can meaningfully and effectively engage people with lived experience.
Reports & Briefs McKay, T., Lindquist, C., Melton, A. P., & Martinez, R. (2014). Parent and Family Involvement with Youth in the Tribal Juvenile Justice System. https://www.rti.org/publication/parent-and-family-involvement-youth-tribal-juvenile-justice-system/fulltext.pdf
Reports & Briefs Rozzell, L. (2013). The role of family engagement in creating trauma-informed juvenile justice systems. Los Angeles, CA: National Center for Child Traumatic Stress.https://www.nctsn.org/resources/role-family-engagement-creating-trauma-informed-juvenile-justice-systems
Toolkit Toolkit for Implementing Authentic Youth Engagement Strategies Within State Advisory Groups
This document aims to help organizations address the challenges of recruiting and retaining youth participation in State Advisory Groups. The section on promoting youth recruitment and retention on State Advisory Groups (SAG) provides an assessment form, as well as a discussion of challenges and solutions for recruiting youth, developing mentorship programs, and youth conference/summit planning.
Toolkit Listen Up! Youth Listening Session Toolkit | Dept. of Health and Human Services Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health, Office of Population Affairs
This toolkit and its accompanying workbook with 18 ready-to-use templates, forms, and sample documents is the culmination of the Youth Listening Session (YLS) Special Project and is informed by the lessons learned, insights gained, and successful approaches used by the 2018 and 2019 YLS special project grantees.
Webinars & SpeechesFamily Engagement in Juvenile Justice Systems: Building a Strategy and Shifting Culture
Hosted by the Council of State Governments Justice Center and OJJDP, this webinar reviews a framework to support jurisdictions in making the shift away from an ad-hoc, system-centered approach and feature a family-driven organization that works to ensure that family voice and power are present across all system decision points.
Journal ArticlesSimons, I., van der Vaart, W., Vermeiren, R., Rigter, H., Breuk, R., van Domburgh, L., & Mulder, E. (2019). Parental Participation in Juvenile Justice Institutions: Parents’ Perspectives on Facilitating and Hindering Factors. International Journal of Forensic Mental Health, 18(2), 124–137. https://doi.org/10.1080/14999013.2018.1526231
Journal ArticlesVidal, S., & Woolard, J. (2016). Parents' perceptions of juvenile probation: Relationship and interaction with juvenile probation officers, parent strategies, and youth's compliance on probation. Children and Youth Services Review, 66, 1-8. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.childyouth.2016.04.019



Youth and Family Partnership News: 

October 27, 2022
OJJDP, the Coalition for Juvenile Justice and the National Juvenile Justice Network cohosted a youth panel discussion: What Youth Justice Means to Youth: A Vision for the Future

This hybrid (in-person and virtual) event featured a panel of youth leaders presenting their policy platform of recommendations to transform the youth justice system. 

Watch the Presentation


August 4, 2022
OJJDP Administrator Liz Ryan hosted a series of listening sessions this summer with youth justice stakeholders, national partners, and justice-involved youth and families. Feedback from the listening sessions informed the Office's work in advancing three priorities:

  • Treat children as children. 
  • Serve children at home, with their families, in their communities. 
  • Open up opportunities for youth people involved in the justice system. 

OJJDP plans to issue an action plan that incorporates ideas from the listening sessions. 

Date Created: January 24, 2023