In a little over 10 months, we will all have a very important birthday to celebrate…MCCOY’s!
December 2013 is the 20th Anniversary of the Marion County Commission on Youth Inc! I have been working on a research project to examine some of the early,foundational MCCOY documents, specifically the “Blueprint for Action: Places to Go—A strategic Plan for Developing Free Time Opportunities and Activities for Youth in Marion County.”
In the Blueprint, a working committee defined eight key goals to strengthen the landscape for free time opportunities for youth in Marion County. As a part of my research, I’m interviewing youth development professionals to examine which of those goals and action steps have been achieved—and in which areas we still have work to do. We’re also working with a School of Public and Environmental Affairs Capstone team from IUPUI to help expand our research to youth and parents. Our research will culminate in a Blueprint for Action 2013!
Parsing through the Blueprint for Action document is fascinating for SO many reasons, here are my top three:
- I can see which MCCOY initiatives really gained traction and have created a lasting impact on the lives of youth in Marion County.
- I get to meet some of the most committed, caring individuals around—a cadre of Marion County Youth Development Professionals!
- I get to ask youth workers about their feedback on the status of these goals.
They have given invaluable insight into the status of youth and families in Marion County. Here’s a sneak peek at one of my favorite quotes:
“I think the need has been identified really well, but the process of making Marion County a youth friendly community has not been matched or supported by the youth of 2013. I think the strategies that are employed are old strategies from 20 years ago. It’s almost like, if you’re starting the sentence with ‘when we were young…’ you’re already on the wrong track!”
You’ll have to read the Blueprint for Action – 2013 when it’s released in December for more quotes, perspectives, priorities, and collective goals for making Marion County a “youth-friendly” community that supports the positive development of every child!