Building Youth Leadership Model for Urban Youth Action

Urban Youth Action, Inc. (UYA) has a Youth Staff component of programming which employs 6-12 program participants to work alongside adult staff in various organizational departments and assist with the organization’s daily operations.

Recognizing the uniqueness of this program component, UYA sought assistance from OCD’s Division of Applied Research and Evaluation to examine their current Youth Staff program model and its benefits in terms of leadership development.

OCD’s team worked closely with UYA’s leadership to gain a thorough understanding of their current programs and models’ implementation. Consecutively, OCD conducted a literature review of youth leadership development best practices and effective components. OCD aligned youth leadership best practices with UYA’s current program activities and was able to identify core elements of UYA’s programming and recommend changes and additions to current program activities.

OCD also worked with UYA leadership to suggest evaluation activities and provide resources for continued evaluation efforts as changes are made to the program model.

As a result of these activities, OCD was able to produce a comprehensive package that documents UYA’s Youth Staff and YDP models and relevant youth leadership literature and that provides UYA a number of tools and processes to use for continuous quality improvement.

For more information, please contact Joan Eichner, Director of Applied Research and Evaluation, at or 412.383.1310