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Developmental Assets

What are Developmental Assets?

Developmental assets are the 40 essential building blocks children need to grow into healthy, successful adults. These building blocks have tremendous power to protect youth from many different harmful or unhealthy choices, including:

  • getting involved in violence

  • illicit drug use or tobacco use

  • problem alcohol use

  • gang involvement

  • antisocial behavior

  • early sexual activity

  • school problems

  • gambling

The Developmental Assets movement was pioneered by YMCA of the USA and the Search Institute, a nonprofit think tank that has conducted research for over 50 years and has surveyed millions of youth across the country.  Their findings are concrete, common sense, positive experiences and qualities essential to raising successful, healthy young people.  Old Colony YMCA incorporates asset building into everything we do!

Here are some tips to help you build assets in the children and teens you encounter in your life:

  • Listen with more than just one ear...fully engage in the conversation

  • Repeat your positive thoughts about them...send your praise via phone call, email, text message or note

  • Be consistent with your messages regarding boundaries, structure, and schedules

  • Share your interests with, sports, hobbies, reading, music, poetry, etc.

  • Model the behaviors you want to see...manners, language, work ethic etc.

  • Feed their enthusiasm and give them energy, clarity, and focus

Have questions about Developmental Assets? Contact your Old Colony YMCA branch!