Youth Can! Grow Healthy: A Formative Evaluation of a Positive Youth Development Program

Andrew Carberry, Marsha Spence

Abstract


This paper presents a formative evaluation of an afterschool program that combined positive youth development and school garden curricula. Novel approaches were used to teach elementary school children about gardening and nutrition, and to engage them in advocacy for healthy community physical activity and nutrition environments. The youth development curriculum included sessions on team building, community pride, healthy eating, physical activity, and advocacy. Photovoice methods were used to allow participants to assess their community and communicate findings with community leaders. The school garden curriculum included nutrition and gardening lessons. Formative evaluation was conducted for each session. Themes of the evaluation were: successful methods for engaging youth, issues in the social environment, and implications for program management. Evaluation results are discussed in relationship to relevant youth development literature to provide recommendations that will strengthen future programs.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5195/jyd.2013.95

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Copyright (c) 2013 Journal of Youth Development

License URL: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/