Relationships Matter: A Mixed-Methods Evaluation of Youth and Adults Working Together as Partners


  • Kenneth R. Jones University of Kentucky



Highlights of a multi-method research study conducted to understand the perceptions and experiences of youth and adults working together within communities are shared in this article. The results revealed that the most positive youth-adult relationship experiences were those with supportive adults willing to share power with youth, those instituting youth-led endeavors where young people were allowed to demonstrate high levels of involvement and responsibility, and those involving participants who had previously worked as a community partner. Participants in Youth-Led Collaborations were more positive toward their experiences than those in Adult-Led Collaborations and Youth-Adult Partnerships. Also, participants in relationships located in rural areas indicated more positive experiences than those in urban areas. In addition, the critical elements of various youth-adult relationships were also underscored, thus identifying characteristics that have significant importance in nurturing interactions between young people and positive adults.






Feature Articles