Positive Youth Development
Strengthening Families: We believe that even if a family is very destructive there are often many opportunities and options for helping the family grow stronger and healthier. Furthermore, we believe that youth oriented program development must emphasize family strengthening and re-unification when appropriate with the guarantee of support services as the option of first choice. We believe that any approach to helping troubled families acknowledge and build on existing strengths, with the primary objective of protecting children and youth within the family.
Promoting Healthy Alternatives: We believe in healthy, positive alternatives for all youth. We believe that young people can and will make informed choices concerning their own health and futures. We believe that voluntary, community-based youth-involved services allow for adult guidance and support create positive alternatives for youth in need.
Supporting Diversity: We believe that each person is unique and important. We value and encourage the diversity of individuals based on race, creed, color, sex, ethnicity, sexual orientation, and family background. Organizational procedures reflect positive efforts to promote the equality of all people, especially youth. Programs serving youth and families should accommodate differences and be encouraged as a bedrock principle.
Valuing Youth: We believe advocates for youth have an obligation to educate and encourage policy makers to be active in acknowledging, protecting, and enhancing the value of youth to the community. Youth are an asset – not a liability.
Empowering Youth: We believe young people must be seen as full-fledged citizens of our world. Youth empowerment, the act of bringing out natural talents and energies of youth, is effective when youth join in partnerships with adults. Youth can realize an increase in individual self-worth and skills through empowerment that creates a positive impact in our communities. The participation of young people in the planning and implementation of services and in mobilizing community support for programs that affect their lives and those of their families is essential to their individual development and the success of the programs working with them.
Networking: We believe quality services for youth are developed and enhanced through information sharing, coordination, and mutual support. Tumbleweed is committed to strengthening networking activities at local and state levels. Reciprocity, representation, and communication are essential elements of dynamic networking.