Every child and youth needs and deserves support and guidance from caring adults in their families, schools and communities, including ongoing secure relationships with parents and other family adults, as well as multiple and consistent formal and informal positive relationships with teachers, mentors, coaches, youth volunteers and neighbors.
For this promise to be kept, young people should have many caring adults across multiple contexts of their lives:
- Caring relationships with parents/primary caregivers
- Caring relationships with extended family adults
- Caring relationships with adults at school
- Caring relationships with adults in the neighborhood/community, including formal mentors in school- and community–based settings.
Every child and youth needs and deserves to be physically and emotionally safe everywhere they are – from the actual places of families, schools, neighborhoods and communities to the virtual places of media—and to have an appropriate balance of structured, supervised activities and unstructured, unscheduled time.
Young people need safe paces at home, school and in their communities:
- Safe family
- Parental monitoring
- Safe school
- Safe neighborhood/community
- Safe outdoor play spaces
- Opportunity for involvement in high-quality structured activities
- Frequent participation in high-quality structured activities
Every child and youth needs and deserves the healthy bodies, healthy minds and healthful habits and choices resulting from regular health care and needed treatment, good nutrition and exercise, comprehensive knowledge and skills and role models of physical and psychological health.
Young people who experience these eight key indicators have a healthy start:
- Regular checkups and health insurance
- Good nutrition
- Daily physical activity
- Recommended amount of restful sleep
- Health education classes with comprehensive content
- Positive adult role models
- Peer influence
- Emotional safety
Every child and youth needs and deserves the intellectual development, motivation and personal, social-emotional and cultural skills needed for successful work and lifelong learning in a diverse nation, as a result of having quality learning environments, challenging expectations and consistent formal and informal guidance and mentoring.
These nine indicators provide a gauge as to whether young people are experiencing an effective education for marketable skills and lifelong learning.
- Positive school climate
- School culture emphasizes academic achievement
- Learning to use technology effectively
- Youth/child reading for pleasure
- Friends value being a good student
- School perceived as relevant and motivating
- Parents actively involved with child’s education
- Adult sources of guidance about schooling and careers
- Opportunities to learn social/emotional skills
Opportunities to Serve Others
Every child and youth needs and deserves the chance to make a difference—in their families, schools, communities, nation and world—through having models of caring behavior, awareness of the needs of others, a sense of personal responsibility to contribute to larger society, and opportunities for volunteering, leadership and service.
These five indicators provide a gauge as to whether young people are experiencing opportunities to make a difference through helping others.
- Adult models of volunteering, including parents
- Peer models of volunteering
- Parent civic engagement
- Family conversations about current events
- Youth given useful roles in schools and communities