Building Better Programs: Tips for Building a Robust Youth Program
By Arly Communications on March 3, 2022
Childhood experiences can have a significant impact on our life journey, from career prospects to our ability to form relationships. Positive youth programs have become an essential part of rounding out childhood experiences, helping to build an identity and sense of purpose, reduce high-risk behaviors, bolster the learning and life skills that are critically important to success in today’s world, and build lasting and meaningful relationships.
Arly can help you get the most out of your program by making it easier for your team to design, manage, and assess exceptional experiences and prove your program’s impact that will keep children and their families coming back.
Why Are Youth Programs Important?
The benefits of youth programs are vast and diverse. While all programs offer benefits such as helping to shape kids’ sense of identity and improved self-esteem, programs can also focus on cultivating specific skills or managing risk factors in the target group of youth.
Some of the most important benefits of youth programs are:
- Stronger communities: Quality youth programs promote a sense of interconnectedness and improve communities by better supporting children. They may connect youth to their communities by nurturing relationships between youth and community stakeholders, and encouraging businesses to sponsor programs that invest in their community.
- Stronger character: Youth programs can improve the learning and life skills that better prepare kids for success in life. Instilling a growth mindset promotes well-being and can lead to better grades, a decrease in discipline issues, an improvement in attendance, and an increase in self-confidence.
- Better academic performance: Youth programs can target specific academic skills to meet the unique needs of their community. Working closely with local schools, youth programs can supplement school-based learning and provide the extra attention and hands-on activities students need for learning recovery.
- Family involvement: Exceptional programs draw in families, encouraging them to get more involved in their children’s education and extracurricular pursuits.
- Safety: Youth programs provide a safe place for kids to go during the summer and before and after school.
Tips for a More Effective Youth Program
A 2020 study published in the International Journal of Behavioral Development suggests that the most effective programs focus on what it terms “The Big Three.” They are:
- Activities that cultivate life skills
- Positive, lasting relationships between adults and youth
- Youth involvement and leadership
Keeping the four Ws central in your planning can help you meet all three objectives:
- Why is this important? What skills are you hoping to develop and why? Identify specific program goals, making note of any specific metrics you must meet. Develop tools for tracking these metrics over time and at regular intervals.
- Who will benefit? What are the benefits of your program, and to whom? How can you use those benefits to get greater community buy-in, such as via sponsorships?
- What is an effective time frame? Setting clear, time-limited goals helps measure your success.
- Where can I find help? Whom should your program work with? What experts and instructors do you need? What community partnerships could strengthen your offerings? Successful, high-quality youth programs bring business management and programming expertise together.
Leveraging Arly to Build a Robust Youth Program
With quality infused from end to end, Arly combines all your programming tools and data into one powerful platform to help your organization meet the unique needs of your community with measurable, high-quality programs that drive impact.
Arly helps you achieve your goals by providing the ability for you to:
- Support long-term growth for your administrators and staff with online self-paced professional learning.
- Simplify your enrollment process with online applications and forms personalized to your program’s brand.
- Delight families with photos and direct messages that offer them a bird’s eye view into just how incredible your program is for their child.
- Stay on track with a pre-populated planning list rooted in decades of evidence on what it takes to build high-quality programs.
- Quickly access real-time data, including recruitment, attendance, and retention rates, to ensure your program is on track.
- Add on expansive curriculum options, including enrichment, literacy, math, 21st century learning skills, and physical fitness.
- And so much more.
Turn to Arly to streamline your youth programming, better serve your community, and keep youth coming back year after year. Learn more and request a demo of the Arly platform today!