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Youth Development Specialists

Below, please find additional take action steps for Youth Development Specialists:

All material excerpted from: Blumenkrantz, D.G. & the ROPE® Community (2015). The Rite Of Passage Experience© ROPE® Guide for Promoting Youth & Community Maturation & Health, 5th edition.

Trinity of Inquiry:

One of the first “technologies” we introduce is called the Trinity of Inquiry. It is a powerful process that uses the first three of the twenty elements in the architectural structure for youth & community development through rites of passage to guide conversations to explore contemporary issues in a community. It is also used to assess if and how all of the other seventeen elements are present and if they are present what is their relationship to each other and their relative strength? If they don’t exist where might something similar already be present and available to use in the process of building a community’s rite of passage experience process?

An example:

#1. What’s the story? This is the first element in our narrative on change.

All change is local – it begins in the hearts and minds of those who ask a question. And, a question almost always invites of story.

Thinking about the best questions that matter related to a particular issue always result from conversations within a community. The questions refine the issues in ways that are respectful of and integrate the nuances of culture, community and place.

Here are some areas of questioning:

  • What is our story related to education of our children and helping them come of age? What are we doing?
  • What is our philosophy and approach?
  • What are the different programs and opportunities available to all our children?
  • Do all our children have access to these opportunities?
  • What are the roadblocks and challenges that keep our children from engaging in the opportunities they need to come of age well?
  • What would it look like when all our children have come of age well?

 

More specific inquiry might be focused on:

  • What should we do about violence in our society?
  • What can we do about teenage drug and alcohol use?
  • What can we do about bullying?
  • How can we protect our children?
  • How are all problems confronting our children and us related?
  • What are the really important question(s) that can help us frame our inquiry?
  • What would we be doing when institutions mattered in the lives of children were reframed as places of initiation and rites of passage?

Whatever the circumstance or inquiry there is usually an invitation to tell a story. We love to tell and hear stories. Every time we think about change we are inviting a story. When seen through the lens of the 20 elements, a central questions is:

What would we be doing when we adopt the framework of youth & community development through rites of passage in our community?

 

Asset Mapping in Community Organizing:
Finding out where ingredients for rites of passage ready exist

 

Asset Mapping forCommunity Rites of Passage©
David G. Blumenkrantz, Ph.D. Ed.M.

Communities have everything they need to raise their children. They have adults and opportunities for children to immerse themselves in educational, recreational, spiritual, ancestral, economic and natural environments. Making meaningful connections between youth and these environments is the key to the construction of contemporary rites of passage. Rites of passage can be the vehicle to make these connections meaningful for both children and the community.

An example:

These questions can help guide a community to consider the best way to connect youth with important community resources. You may wish to focus only on some of these at any one time.

Connection with Ancestors – Culture:

  • What cultural resources currently exist in the community? (Civic, religious, etc.)
  • What are the forces that maintain distance between youth and their ancestral culture?
  • What are existing resources that bridge the distance between youth and their cultural assets? (Programs, expectations, agreements, etc.)
  • What is the desired situation? What would you love to see?
  • What would “we” each be doing when we are living in a community where youth are connected to their ancestors?

Play & Positive leisure time activities:

  • What resources exist in the community for youth to experience positive and healthy leisure time activities?
  • What are the forces that maintain distance between youth and these positive leisure time activities?
  • What are existing resources that bridge the distance between youth and their cultural assets? (Programs, expectations, agreements, etc.)
  • What is the desired situation? What would you love to see?
  • What would “we” each be doing when we are living in a community where youth are connected to play & positive leisure time activities?

 

Force Field
Find out how all things are related

 

Force Field Analysis –

Once we identify the presence strengthen and location of existing resources and assets related to a community-oriented rite of passage we want to see how we can strengthen their relationship and link them a common story that engages the whole system.

Force Field Analysis & Conversation

An example:

The following steps can be adapted for using a Force Field Analysis within a particular context and culture. Adaptation is key.

  • Describe the current situation – What’s the Story?
  • Describe the desired situation – What would we love to see?
  • What would we (students, parents, teachers, etc.) be doing when we are living in a community that we’d love to see?
  • Identify where the current situation will go if no action is taken –
  • List all the forces driving change toward the desired situation – such as connecting youth with their ancestors/culture or positive leisure activities/play
  • List all the forces resisting change toward the desired situation – such as connecting youth with their ancestors/culture or positive leisure activities/play
  • What are the values and ethics that inform and guide –expectations for behaviors, especially related to how we educate and help our children come of age? Do they recognize, respect and adapt to all cultures and setting to nurture a world that works for all?
  • Are all the forces valid?
  • Can they be changed?
  • Which are the most critical forces? –

These are only a few of the technologies used to enact the “Vision” for youth and community development through rites of passage.

What We Believe is a refinement of the "Vision". © David G. Blumenkrantz, Ph.D. Ed.M. 1995

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