Installing a ROPE® initiative in your community has deep and meaningful learning opportunities for the Youth, Parents/Guardians, and overall Community.
> Youth Opportunities for Learning & Community Participation
All youth activities within a ROPE® initiative are culturally specific and relevant, developmentally sequenced and appropriate. These activities are designed to increase skills for living, promote positive self-esteem, foster a connection with a “spiritual self,” and promote a shift in consciousness and a belief in and sense of their own transformation. They include:
- Skill building for positive youth development. Positive leisure-time activities and an understanding of the importance of having fun through positive play rather than more self-destructive activities like drinking and drug use and sexual experimentation.
- Mentorship relationships and/or peer counseling or other youth empowerment activities.
- Community service, which provides youth with opportunities to transfer and demonstrate newly acquired skills in a setting that affords them higher status as an emerging adult in the community.
- Celebration (initiation) events that mark significant transitions between elementary, middle, and high school, and where initiates demonstrate some form of competency learned from their initial ROPE®
- Multicultural and ethnically sensitive opportunities for youth to explore and gain an understanding of their own culture of origin.
- A succession of increasingly difficult physical and mental ordeals or challenges where youth have to demonstrate a competency in learned skills in order to accomplish the challenge and move on to a higher level of challenge. Youth have an opportunity for self-dialog and reflection.
> Parental Opportunities for Learning & Community Participation
Throughout the process parents/guardians get an opportunity to acknowledge and participate in their children’s transition to adulthood. Parents/guardians are also offered a structure that allows them to let go of their children in a responsible and safe manner. Some of their learning opportunities include:
- The importance of rites of passage for both youth and parents/guardians, and the expectations for parental involvement in their children’s initiatory process.
- Information about adolescent development and how to parent adolescents.
- Information that increases parental understanding of and sensitivity towards developmental milestones of mid-life and the potential collision of adolescent transitions with mid-life transitions.
- A variety of strategies to interact with children around themes of rites of passage during and following the ROPE®
> Community Functioning Opportunities
The ROPE® process is intentionally designed to foster the building of partnerships among parents/guardians, teachers, and other members of the community, in the service of youth development. This provides numerous opportunities for individuals and community organizations to learn about and experience the power of “community.”
- Identification and community linkage of resources to support the youth and parent component of ROPE®, and mobilization of the community to develop and coordinate such resources.
- Administrative structure that is inclusive of a diverse representation of the community, to provide a process for ROPE® development, implementation, modification, and adaptation.
- Promotion of an authentic sense of community by fostering a sense of mutual connectedness, dependency, and responsibility.
- Establishment of strong and clear community standards for youth to learn and accept, while providing positive and healthy “elders” as role models to guide youth on the rite of passage.