Youth Action Research

					Noah Kirksey
Jenna Jalbert
Pierre Osias

        Youth Action Research
                Our Objective
• Our mission was to research and compile data from various
  sources about the issues facing youth in under-resourced
  neighborhoods
• We focused our efforts on three major cities in the
  Massachusetts area: Boston, Springfield, Holyoke.
• Our goal was to analyze the data that we collected and
  compare it with overall state data to obtain a better
  understanding of the cities lack of necessary resources
• Research to find out what efforts have already been established
  and are working to combat issues facing youth in under-
  resourced neighborhoods
• Find out what ways we as students can contribute our efforts
  to make positive changes
        Issues Facing Youth
• Data analysis on youth in these cities consist of:
  -Economic issues facing youth
  -Educational Resources
  -Available housing resources
  -Youth incarceration and impact of violence
  -Race/Gender inequities
  -Youth community/cultural organizing efforts
• -Etc…..
                                 Boston
Poverty Within Boston:
•   From 1992 to 2000 poverty overall has risen in Boston
•   23% of families with children are at or below the poverty level
•   Boston is ranked as the 13th state with the highest poverty rate
                     Boston
             Youth Violence, 1996-2005
• From 1999 to 2002, youth-gang related homicides in
  Massachusetts rose more than 50 percent,

• From 1996 to 2003, Boston experienced a drop in
  youth violence. Then, the number of shootings started
  to climb: 268 in 2004 and 341 in 2005. The city is on
  track for a projected number of 616 shootings in
  2006.

• Last year, high-school-age teens comprised 50
  percent of shooting victims.
                   Boston
       Massachusetts Youth Risk Behavior
                Survey, 2005:
• 24% of high school students reported having been
  bullied in school during the past year.

• 10% of high school students were involved in a
  gang in the year before the survey.

• Over one-fifth of high school students (22%)
  reported having their property stolen or
  deliberately damaged at school in the past year.
          MA Demographics
• There were 1,251,263 youth and young adults ages 10 to 24 in
  Massachusetts in 2000, 19.7% of the Commonwealth’s
  population
            Massachusetts
The proportion of school age youth, (ages 10-17) is 10.6%, but varies
throughout MA.
                     Boston

• While poverty rates continue to rise, youth funding is
  being cut
• In order to see a positive correlation between youth
  and violence, the public must take action
• An increase in youth programs will help eliminate the
  rising levels of violence as a whole
• We must provide Boston’s youth with positive
  organizations in order for them to succeed and not
  end up as another statistic
                     Springfield
                           Demographics:
In 2004, Springfield’s population was
• Was slightly less than 45 percent white,
• Little less than 20 percent of residents identifying as African
   American
• 30 percent identifying as Hispanic or Latino

                        Youth Demographics:

• One-fourth of Springfield’s population is under the age of 18,.

• In 2004 Springfield’s population were between the age of 10 and
  14, compared to less than seven percent of Massachusetts’
  population
                         Springfield
The graph compares the percentage of population by age group of Massachusetts and Springfield.
     As you can see Springfield youth population ages 10-14 dramatically surpasses that of
                                  Massachusetts as a whole
              Springfield
Family Statistics:
• 49.8 of families consist of married couples
• 39.8 percent of families headed by a single
  woman

• Median family income of families headed by a
  single woman remained below $20,000 for
  every year from 2000 to 2004
              Springfield
Education Conditions:

• The state’s average percentage of public
  school students considered low-income has
  hovered around one quarter,

• However more than three-quarters of
  Springfield students are considered low-
  income.
                           Springfield
This graphs illustrates that Springfield’s percentage of low income students is
significantly lower than that of the state, beginning in 2001 and continuing a steady
trend up to 2006
               Springfield
Economic Conditions:
• Springfield’s poverty rate, at 23.1 percent
 - more than ten percentage points above that of
   the nation.

• Child poverty rates, more than one in three
  children live in poverty
                                Holyoke
POVERTY STATUS IN 1999
• Families . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2,150   22.6%
• With related children under 18 years. . . . . . . . . . .1,869                   33.9%
• With related children under 5 years. . . . . . . . . . . .1,012                  45.2%

•   Families with female householder, no
•   husband present . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1,532        48.0%
•   With related children under 18 years. . . . . . . . . . .1,376                 55.1%
•   With related children under 5 years. . . . . . . . . . . .760                   71.0%
                       Holyoke
• Community risk factors that contribute to youth violence, drug
  use, and delinquency are great. Some neighborhoods are
  characterized by abandoned buildings, deteriorated and
  inadequate infrastructures, and lack of sufficient recreational
  facilities

• Forty-one percent of the general population and 68.7% of the
  public school population is of Hispanic descent, 29% of
  Holyoke families and 51% of students are living at or below
  the poverty level and 70% of public school children are
  eligible for free lunches.
                   Holyoke
          Youth Violence And Incarceration

• Between January 1999 and April 2000, the Holyoke
  Police Department logged 85 arrests for youth
  between the ages of 10 and 17 for drug related
  offenses

• The Hampden County Gang Task Force reports the
  presence of five street gangs within the City and
  school counselors estimate a three-fold increase of
  gang activity within the high schools
                 Holyoke
Education Conditions:

Based on the MCAS testing, Holyoke's test
 results indicate a large percentage of students
 are at risk of academic failure. Test scores
 from 2000 showed 48% of students scoring in
 the 'failing' and 39% in the 'needs
 improvement' categories
                Holyoke
         Per Capita Income: Holyoke vs. MA State

20,000

18,000                         17,224

16,000

14,000

12,000           11,088
                                                   Holyoke
10,000
                                                   State
 8,000

 6,000

 4,000

 2,000

    0
                          1
                    Holyoke
           Per Capita Income in Holyoke by Race


$16,000

$14,000   $13,531


$12,000

$10,000

 $8,000
                             $6,709

 $6,000
                                                  $4,131
 $4,000

 $2,000

    $0
          Whites        African Americans         Latinos
            Holyoke
         Poverty Rate: Holyoke vs. MA State

30.00%
            25.70%
25.00%


20.00%


15.00%


10.00%                                    8.90%


5.00%


0.00%
            Holyoke                     MA State
                   Holyoke
                  Poverty Rate in Holyoke by Race

70.00%

                                      59.10%
60.00%

50.00%
                         42.80%
40.00%                                              Whites
                                                    African-Americans
30.00%                                              Latinos

20.00%
         13.70%

10.00%

0.00%
         Whites          African-      Latinos
                        Americans
               Holyoke
      Poverty Rate for Latino Women Headed
              Household in Holyoke

100.00%            93.10%
 90.00%

 80.00%

 70.00%

 60.00%
                                      Latino Female Headed
 50.00%
                                      Household
 40.00%

 30.00%

 20.00%

 10.00%

  0.00%
                      1
                Latino Females
         Analysis Comparison
A lower share of teens is giving birth in Massachusetts
• In 2003, Massachusetts ranked third overall in the nation in teen birth
   rate at 23 percent. More than 4,600 teens gave birth in Massachusetts
   in 2004, compared with about 5,300 in 2000
       Youth Organizing Efforts
•   Boston’s Youth line
•   Dunk the Vote
•   Boston Mobilization
•   Holyoke Youth Task Force
•   Holyoke Youth Alliance
•   Holyoke S.T.E.P (Skills, Training, Enrichment Program)
•   Joseph A. Budd Center Youth Assessment Center
•   Cops and Kids
•   Radio Rookies
              Boston’s Youth line
    Boston’s Youth line is a city office that works to connect
    young people to relevant programming, such as
                                                         Youth line serves
   tutoring programs,                                   as a convenient
   summer jobs,                                         access point for
   mentoring, camps,                                    youth who are
   and health lines.                                    concerned with a
                                                         particular issue,
                                                         but are not sure
                                                         how it fits into the
                                                         structure of
                                                         Boston’s political
                                                         process.
Interested individuals can either call in to “Youth line listeners,” or
search the Youth line database on the web. Listeners are trained to
direct young people to relevant city services and show them how the
city can serve as a resource for them
                 Dunk the Vote

Dunk the Vote
• Dunk the Vote, sponsored
  by the Boston subsidiary of
  the national Youth Vote
  Coalition,


 Combines a basketball tournament with voter registration. By
 making voter information and registration available in a setting
 that appeals to youth, this event, and others like it, bring the
 tools of government to those who might not otherwise be
 exposed to them.
Boston
Mobilization is
a non-profit       Since its founding in 1977, Mobe has worked
                   specifically with college students, empowering
community
                   them to engage in their communities. Youth find
organization       their voices as agents for constructive change,
that works to      utilizing direct action, community education and
engage young       local legislative efforts to run grassroots
people on          campaigns for peace, racial equality, economic
different social   justice and genuine democracy
issues.
MISSION:
The mission of the Holyoke Youth Task Force is to work
collaboratively in order to strengthen the voice of youth
in Holyoke, and advocate for sufficient resources to meet
their needs
                                      Highlights:
      In early 2005, the Task Force embarked on a strategic planning process to
     determine risk and protective factors that influence five problem behaviors
        among youth: substance abuse, teen pregnancy, drop out, violence and
                                     delinquency.
The Holyoke Youth Task Force
offers youth advocates:
Networking
Advocacy
Professional Development
Resource Development
HOLYOKE YOUTH ALLIANCE
MISSION:
HYA recently received a grant from the Reproductive
Rights and Organizing Fund of the Ms. Foundation for
Women, launching our new project Rise Up Now (RUN).


                                   HIGHLIGHTS:
                                    RISE UP NOW
      RUN is designed to mobilize the Latino community, empowering Latinas to
      take political power, to ensure reproductive services for underserved youth,
            and to expand economic, educational, and political accessibility
                 HOLYOKE STEP
        Skills, Training and Enrichment Program
MISSION:
STEP is an academic support program for students from
the 7th and 8th grades in Holyoke. The primary goal is
to assist youth in obtaining skills and motivation to
complete middle school and high school and to enroll in
college.                                                  PROGRAM ACTIVITIES:
               STEP offers after-school academic tutoring at Lynch, Magnet and Peck
              Middle Schools. Tutoring generally takes place Monday- Thursday from
              2:30-4:00. STEP tutors are highly qualified high school students who are
                                                                   graduates of STEP.
The Joseph A. Budd Center is unique
to Western Massachusetts. It is a
collaboration of the SPD and other                  Partners include:
major youth serving agencies.
                                      Springfield Police Department
                                                Youth Aid Bureau,
                                          Student Support Officers,
                                            Gang Suppression Unit,
                                  Springfield School Department,
                                  Department of Social Services,
                                  Department of Youth Services,
                                 Center for Human Development
             Cops and Kids
What is Cops and Kids?
 It is designed to promote drug and gang free
 activities for at risk youth..
                     This after school program provides for
                     class room training giving an anti-drug ,
                     anti-smoking, anti-gang, and anti-alcohol
                     message loosely based on the national
                     D.A.R.E. program.
                 Radio Rookies®
• Radio Rookies®                                 http://www.wnyc.org
  is a New York                                  /radiorookies/Hunts
  Public Radio®                                  Point/Pun.html
  initiative that
                                                 http://www.wnyc
  provides                                       .org/radiorookie
  teenagers with the                             s/HuntsPoint/Eri
  tools and training                             c.html
  to create radio
  stories about
                       Radio Rookies typically runs one or two
  themselves, their
  communities and      workshops a year, each lasting anywhere from
  their world.         four to eight months. During the workshops,
                       Rookie Reporters learn everything about radio
 http://www.wnyc.or    journalism: from how to conduct an interview
 g/radiorookies/Bus    and develop a story to how to craft a script and
 hwick/Macho.html
                       digitally edit their audio

				
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