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Components of Effective Youth Programs

There are many types of youth programs available. Some youth programs are effecitve while others are not, but what components make up an effective youth program? This article will review 5 main components to look for in effective youth programs.


Many programs exist to help troubled teens and families seeking change. While some programs seek only to occupy participants time, other treatment programs offer a variety of components that have proven beneficial in helping teens make life long changes and improvements in their lives. Key components of effective treatment programs include:

Behavior Modification- Youth benefit from a program where appropriate behavior is reinforced and rewarded, and inappropriate behavior is confronted and redirected, with consequences given. Expect high standards, tight supervision, and opportunities for motivation and encouragement from an effective program.

Academics- Many youth are able to earn high school credit while they attend an accredited treatment program. Enrolling in a treatment program with an academic component provides educational advancement and encouragement. Often class credits can be transferred to a college, university or local high school.

Activities- Effective programs offer a balance of enriching activities. This may include recreation, exercise, learning, personal development and social opportunities.

Personal/ Emotional Development- Youth should have opportunities to participate in introspective activities that help them make changes in their lives. An effective program will assist them as they evaluate what is and isn't working in their lives and determine how to make necessary changes.

Family Involvement- Effective treatment programs provide opportunities for parental education as well as opportunities for families to rebuild. Some programs offer seminars for parents that coincide with seminars the youth are participating in, as well as family workshops.

We promote residental treatment programs and specialty boarding schools which have proven to have long lasting effects.  If you feel a boot camp structure or military school style program is right for you, make the choice carefully searching for the camp or program that works with a level system and has after care.  Get a free consultation from Troubled Teen 101 to help find appropriate teen help programs for your situation.

Related Article: Programs for Troubled Teens >>

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