Evaluation of the Connected Youth Initiative: Final Report
Findings, lessons learned, and recommendations from an evaluation of a systems-change initiative aimed at better serving unconnected youth, ages 14-24: those who’ve been in the foster care system, had contact with child protective services or juvenile justice, and/or experiencing homelessness. The project served rural communities in Nebraska. Although the study did not find statistical impacts on the overall well-being of participants relative to the comparison group, it did establish that CYI involvement was statistically associated with positive outcomes in some areas, such as in measures of safe and stable living situations, financial stability, and participants’ sense of hopefulness.
The study also found many qualitative examples of CYI’s success, such as enabling youth to buy cars, which allowed them to get jobs for the first time, find housing and employment in their local communities, and access health services and supports. Further, the report describes lessons learned and recommendations regarding how to implement and evaluate initiatives aimed at systems change and improving outcomes for unconnected youth.
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