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Research has shown that by adolescence youth have often internalized negative social stereotypes of themselves and others. These negative attitudes and beliefs are a frequent cause of low self-esteem and interpersonal conflicts. Therefore, a cornerstone of any effective conflict management program must be education that seeks to dispel stereotypes and encourage meaningful dialogue among youth of different backgrounds. These conversations are difficult to achieve within normal classroom or social settings, where research has shown they are often “superficial and truncated,” “conflict-driven,” and “met with fear and avoidance.” However, effective education and dialogue facilitated by experienced professionals, such as Youth Voices Center, can help youth embrace their vulnerability as an opportunity to build empathy and understanding.

Research confirms that pro-social bonding to positive adult role-models can help youth avoid potential interpersonal violence. Furthermore, youth dealing with the normal difficulties of adolescence and the added challenges of their environment benefit tremendously from positive youth development experiences that foster self-efficacy, clear and positive identity, belief in the future, and pro-social involvement. The Power of Peace workshop is a unique opportunity for youth to voice their fears and concerns in a supportive environment that will show them that they are neither alone nor victims of circumstance.

Reports on Program Efficacy

A six statement pre-survey and a seven statement post-survey, is administered each year in various schools to assess the effectiveness of the Power of Peace Program. Areas like self respect, respect towards others, and self perception are tested to indicate the impact Power of Peace has on its participants. Reports are generated and issued at the start of the following year from which data is collected.

The Individual School Report results indicate that Youth Voices Center’s Power of Peace program had a statistically significant positive effect in changing student attitudes from pre-survey to post-survey in all six areas:

  • I respect myself.
  • I am willing to talk to a student different from me.
  • I respect students different from me.
  • I believe violence will not resolve conflict.
  • I am aware of alternatives to violence.
  • I think I know how other people see me.

From the 6 areas listed above, all six areas saw positive percentage change from pre- to post-survey. Specifically, “I am willing to talk to a student different from me,” saw the greatest increase at all schools of +32%. This result displays a central, consistent theme: compassion, community building, bonding and creating a nonjudgmental environment.

New students who were impacted by Power of Peace described the program as: Eye-opening, amazing, informative, awesome, helpful, inspirational, positive, impactful, intense, excellent, life-changing, and insightful.

Quotes that were consistent throughout:

  • “Like a weight was lifted off my shoulders.”
  • “It is important to get to know people instead of judging them.”
  • “I am not the only person who goes through stuff in life.”

Program Reports Per School

2018 – 2019 Annual Reports

2017 Annual Reports

2016 Annual Reports

2015 Annual Reports

2014 Annual Reports

2008 – 2013 Annual Reports