From Youth-Informed to Youth-Led Research and Evaluation Processes: Cross-Cultural Insights and Lessons from Senegal and the USA

AEA and the Senegalese Evaluation Association (SenEval) collaboration builds on six years of exchange and dialogue between the Youth-Focused Evaluation Topical Interest Group (YFE-TIG) at AEA and the Youth and Child Evaluation Theme Group (GT EEJ) at SenEval. The partnership aims to strengthen the ties between these groups and their broader institutions while facilitating interactions with other TIGs and GTs within the partner organizations and beyond.

For our inaugural AEA and SenEval webinar, we're excited to bring together emerging and experienced evaluators collaborating with youth on program design, strategic planning, and evaluation in Senegal and the USA. Our colleagues will present three brief case studies on youth-led processes. They will share insights on culturally representative and practical strategies to collaborate with youth, what they learned from their collaborations and notable process outcomes. Following the brief presentation, we will answer questions and engage in small discussions. The webinar will take place in English and French.

Children and Adolescents Speaking Truth to Adults: Ethics and Participation

In order to speak truth to power, children and adolescents have to overcome multiple obstacles. Despite several conventions supporting their right to participate in decisions that concern them (UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, Treaty of Lisbon), their involvement often remains limited. Children and adolescents' meaningful engagement in research and evaluation is indeed challenging. It requires time and resources to adapt evaluation tools and materials. It also involves specific ethical issues, such as informed parental and child consent. This panel brings ethics at the forefront of their discussion on children’s participation.  It will consider how several gatekeepers (parents, schools, local authorities) can facilitate or interfere with their right to participate. The panel with offer a cross-national perspective with examples from Canada, Europe, and Low and Middle Income Countries. The discussion will focus on ways to ensure meaningful participation, such as visual methods and robust consent processes.

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YouthPower Learning Event: Youth Voice in Action: Tips, Strategies, and Advice from Youth Evaluators

American Evaluation Association Youth-Focused Evaluation Topical Interest Group and the YouthPower Learning Youth Engagement Community of Practice hosted a live webinar showcasing youth voices on the topic of evaluation.

Young evaluators and their adult allies discussed the importance of engaging youth in participatory evaluation activities, such as questionnaire development, data collection, and analysis.
The panel of presenters shared insights about the positive contributions that youth voices make to research and evaluation activities, and what the youth themselves learn as a result of participating. They also shared tips and strategies for including young people in research and evaluation activities.

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YouthPower Learning Webinar: Engaging Hard-to-Reach Youth in Research and Evaluation

The YouthPower Learning Youth Engagement Community of Practice (CoP) and the American Evaluation Association (AEA) Youth-Focused Evaluation Topical Interest Group (YFE-TIG) co-hosted the webinar "Engaging Hard-to-Reach Youth in Research and Evaluation" on March 17 at 9:30 am ET.

This webinar included presentations from three organizations that have engaged hard-to-reach youth in research and evaluation. Search for Common Ground shared its experiences working with youth as data collectors in crisis and conflict contexts, while ADD International discussed engaging youth with disabilities in research. Communities in Collaboration spoke about working with immigrant youth on evaluation activities. This was the second webinar in a series that the YouthPower Learning Youth Engagement Community of Practice is co-hosting with the American Evaluation Association’s (AEA) Youth-Focused Evaluation Topical Interest Group (YFE-TIG).

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