EDC’s approach to youth civic engagement and leadership is built on a foundation of youth participation. Our experience has shown that by meaningfully involving youth as evaluators, advisors, grantees, trainers, and program staff, even as early as the pre-project assessment phase, programs better reflect youth’s priorities and needs, and youths benefit by acquiring valuable skills and experiences.
EDC’s projects focus on increasing the capacity of youth to be actively involved in community development. As a result, youth gain the confidence and skills to shape their own futures as well as those of their communities and societies. We also believe civic engagement activities and leadership development contribute to young people’s broader development outcomes, including preparing for work, commitment to education, and healthy behaviors.