ERIC Number: ED419063
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1997
Reference Count: N/A
Youth Work with Vulnerable Young People. Interchange No. 51.
Powney, Janet; Furlong, Andy; Cartmel, Fred; Hall, Stuart
Research was conducted in Scotland to evaluate the effectiveness of youth work with vulnerable young people, primarily between the ages of 13 and 16. Four complementary methods were adopted: (1) a survey of secondary school students; (2) a series of focus group interviews with young people with experience of youth work; (3) interviews with vulnerable young people; and (4) interviews with key service providers. The research focused on 6 geographic areas of Scotland, 3 characterized by urban poverty and 3 characterized by rural poverty. Findings were that teenagers tended to move away from organized youth activities between the ages of 14 and 16, and that organized youth work appealed the most to those under 14. Participation in sports and other organized activities tended to decline with age as young people enjoyed more casual leisure activities and commercial activities. Young people reported spending a significant portion of their time "hanging around." While nearly 6 in 10 had been a member of some sort of youth group, this percentage declined with age, especially for females. Young people were relatively positive toward youth work, but were not likely to seek guidance or counseling from youth workers. Overall, the most vulnerable young people were the least likely to participate in youth groups, but those who did received benefits and generally spent less time hanging around. The principles of effective youth work identified by the Scottish Inspectorate (education agency) were generally being met, but there were causes for concern in the underutilization of youth services by older teens and the reluctance of these adolescents to seek counseling and guidance. Policy implications are discussed. (SLD)
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Scottish Office Education and Industry Dept., Edinburgh. Research and Intelligence Unit.
Note: The full report is available from the Scottish Council for Research in Education, 15 St. John Street, Edinburgh EH8 8JR, Scotland, United Kingdom (price on application).