Youth voice in YFE

Session Number: YFE2
Track: Youth Focused Evaluation
Session Type: TIG Multipaper
Session Chair: Ross VeLure Roholt [Associate Professor - University of Minnesota]
Presenter 1: Chandria Denise Jones [Senior Study Director - Westat]
Presenter 2: Edgar Estrada [Research Assistant I - Hathaway-Sycamores Child and Family Services]
Presenter 3: Laura Ricciardi [Research Associate - Metis Associates]
Presentation 1 Additional Author: Brie Masselli [Director of Technical Assistance & Evaluation - Youth MOVE National]
Presentation 1 Additional Author: David McClung [Youth Engagement Specialist - Texas System of Care - University of Texas at Austin]
Presentation 1 Additional Author: Abram Rosenblatt [Senior Study Director - Westat]
Presentation 2 Additional Author: Mollie Sternberg [Senior Research Analyst - Hathaway-Sycamores Child and Family Services]
Presentation 2 Additional Author: Janine Quintero [Assistant Vice President of Evaluation and Research - Hathaway-Sycamores Child and Family Services]
Presentation 2 Additional Author: Erin Sullivan [Research Assistant - Hathaway-Sycamores Child and Family Services]
Presentation 3 Additional Author: Susanne Harnett [Managing Senior Associate - Metis Associates]
Time: Nov 14, 2019 (01:45 PM - 02:30 PM)
Room: Hilton Marquette VI

Abstract 1 Title: Elevation, Engagement, & Empowerment: Advancing Youth Voice in Systems of Care Evaluation
Presentation Abstract 1:

Youth voice in evaluation provides an authentic measure of the effectiveness of services and supports, increases the credibility of evaluation outcomes, and provides an opportunity for youth focused participatory evaluation. As youth engage with evaluation design, implementation, analysis, and reporting, they become stronger partners in systems change. Youth engagement in evaluation creates “paths to the future of evaluation,” by contributing to our understanding of the youth experience, developing the next generation of evaluators, and renewing our commitment to the mantra “nothing about us without us.” This workshop focuses on engaging youth in the evaluation of Systems of Care (SOC) expansion and sustainability. Presenters will:

  • Describe the process used to engage youth and young adults in the Children’s Mental Health Initiative National evaluation design and implementation
  • Present findings related to the various roles youth play within SOC and strategies for incorporating youth voice.

Presentation 1 Other Authors: Nataly Johanson Tello, B.S, Westat, Research Assistant
Abstract 2 Title: Seeking and Incorporating Youth Voice in a Residential Program Setting: The use of a Personal Rights Check-in Tool
Presentation Abstract 2:

Hathaway-Sycamores combines youth voice and strong collaborative relationships with residential program stakeholders to promote a culturally competent and inclusive evaluation approach. This presentation will focus on the development and implementation of collaboration in organizations with their different stakeholders, providing a guide to the internal and external evaluations on how to successfully engage stakeholders. It is critical for evaluators to seek and incorporate youth voice in efforts to close the gap between many of the important cultural and social challenges residential programs face today.


Presentation 2 Other Authors: Gina Peck-Sobolewski, MA, LMFT, Cynthia Williams, Joe Ford
Abstract 3 Title: Strategies for Incorporating Youth Voices in Evaluation Research
Presentation Abstract 3:

Youth participatory research relates to the inclusion of young people as partners in research about issues that affect their lives. This session will describe the evaluation of NeON Arts, a program of Carnegie Hall’s Weill Music Institute and NYC’s Department of Probation, which was conducted by Westat and Metis Associates, two independent research firms. The evaluation used a Youth Advisory Group (YAG) throughout the study, leading to the incorporation of youth feedback on the logic model, surveys, and focus group designs. Overall, we found the integration of youth voices throughout this evaluation to be both possible and valuable. This session will share successes in implementing the YAG, such as increased rapport among participants, as well as challenges, such as onboarding of youth. Altogether, these methods hold implications for other evaluation projects, as both the YAG and youth focus group designs can be applied to various settings to garner youth perspective.


Audience Level: All Audiences

Session Abstract (150 words): 

Youth voice in YFE