YouthVote Surveys and Dashboards Gives Youth a Voice

Summary

YouthVote is a project of the Youth Empowerment Fund (YEF), a program within San Francisco’s Department for Children, Youth & Their Families. The YouthVote survey is a citywide effort to gain input from San Francisco high school students about policies and programs that most affect them. Public Profit helped YouthVote improve its annual survey and make its results more accessible.

 

The Question: How can efficiencies be improved to achieve vision?

YouthVote staff were interested in improving the content, administration, and communication around the results of the annual survey. The existing survey overextended the staff’s limited resources and did not address the key policy questions they sought to answer. Compounding this strain on resources, the results were delivered in paper-based reports of 600-plus pages, limiting their usefulness.

 

The Process: Sharpening the focus and enhancing the reporting

Public Profit worked with the YouthVote team to revise the survey so that it targeted key themes. We replaced the lengthy paper report with interactive dashboards that are visually engaging and easy to interpret and allow for YouthVote’s stakeholders to find the information they need quickly and easily.

 

The Outcome: Better access to data empowers youth

YouthVote is able to broadcast its most recent data, as well as compare data over time, through a highly interactive, online tool developed by Public Profit.  YouthVote can share young people’s opinions with the youth they seek to empower as well as use it internally for planning other projects.

Public Profit’s Julie Lo wrote up the experience of working on this project for the American Evaluation Association’s blog

Youth Empowerment Fund

In November 2000, San Francisco voters approved Proposition D, the Children’s Amendment, which reauthorized the Youth & Children’s Fund through June 2015. As a part of the amendment, the Department of Children, Youth and their Families (DCYF) is required to use a minimum of 3% of the Children’s Fund for youth-led, youth-initiated projects; effectively establishing what is now known as The Youth Empowerment Fund. Since its inception, The Youth Empowerment Fund has supported youth-led projects and programs which enable young people to define their own services and address issues that their communities face. Through funding and support of programs in San Francisco that give youth authentic power, The Youth Empowerment Fund challenges traditional youth development agencies and programs that see youth purely as receivers of services with limited voice and power.