December 07, 2016
IssueLab’s new collection on the topic of disconnected youth brings together 139 reports, case studies, program evaluations, factsheets, and toolkits from nonprofits and foundations across the U.S. This diverse collection of “grey literature” from organizations both large and small, dates back 16 years and describes a broad range of approaches to meeting the needs of young people who are crtitically disconnected from institutional, community, and educational supports.
The focus of IssueLab’s search and collection efforts was on the practice-based evidence regarding labor market and skills development for affected youth. Reports were selected for their topical focus but also for their focus on lessons learned from the implementation of different programmatic approaches, providing evaluative rather than just descriptive data. Additional attention was given to identifying and collecting evidence about programs specifically serving youth of color and system-involved youth.
Although the collection was initially motivated by the Annie E. Casey Foundation’s own knowledge needs, by working with IssueLab the foundation has made what is normally an internal evidence scan a public good instead. Our hope is that this collection will continue to grow to include new evidence and insights from work in this field (if you know of a resource we’ve missed, please don’t hesitate to suggest it), and help to ground our collective strategies in the hard-earned lessons of those delivering services to young people.