The Connected Youth Initiative (CYI) uses a collective impact approach to create systems change in rural Nebraska communities and serves people aged 14 to 24 through opportunities for youth leadership, financial literacy training, support service funds, and individualized coaching. You can learn more about CYI at the project page and through our partners at Nebraska Children and Families Foundation.
JPRC researchers recently published a final study report that achieved a Moderate evidence rating by the Corporation of National and Community Services (CNCS). While results varied across domains, the impact evaluation found that CYI achieved multiple positive outcomes for young people who engaged with programming and services. Overall, CYI participants are statistically more likely to report:
- More safe and stable living situations,
- Greater financial stability,
- Increased perceived hope, and
- Decreased emergency care utilization.
The findings are promising; however, it is not possible to determine with confidence whether the reported positive findings are in fact due to program participation, or whether they might be due to participant age due to statistical differences in age among treatment and comparison participants.
The implementation evaluation found that young adults engaged with the CYI through 16 different types of combinations, though coaching was the most common component utilized across all. At a systems-level, staff indicated that setting the CYI model within a collaborative infrastructure often generated greater awareness and understanding of the unconnected youth population within the community.
To learn more about these and other findings, you can access the full report and CNCS Evidence Exchange below.