Making Cents International has launched the Positive Youth Development (PYD) Measurement Toolkit, a first of its kind youth-focused evaluation approach. One of the key deliverables under our YouthPower Learning project, the toolkit provides implementers of youth programming a variety of references, resources, and tools on how to use a positive youth development (PYD) approach for evaluating youth-focused programming. A PYD approach to evaluation will measure whether youth are positively engaged in and benefiting from investments that ultimately empower them to develop in healthy and positive ways so that they can contribute to the development of their communities.
We begin this toolkit with an overview of PYD and explain how a PYD approach fits with youth-focused programming. While the toolkit was developed with the USAID program cycle in mind, it has broad applicability for other programs and donors. We introduce readers, who are primarily implementers of youth programming in low- and middle-income countries, to our PYD Framework that can be used to guide measurement of PYD, starting with program design through the dissemination of and learning from findings.
The main section of the toolkit discusses PYD constructs and illustrative indicators for implementers. We take readers step by step through a series of phases that utilize the PYD Framework (including the illustrative indicators) to demonstrate how youth programs can be optimally designed using a PYD approach, and how program staff can measure PYD-related outcomes in their program to assess the impact on youth.
Finally, this toolkit offers a series of considerations for adapting the indicators and measures to local contexts. Given that the PYD field has mostly been developed and evaluated in high-income countries, it is essential that these measures be appropriately and thoughtfully adapted to low- and middle-income country contexts to effectively evaluate youth programming in various sectors from a PYD perspective.