Developing young people’s capacities to navigate adversity

Type Journal Article - South African Child Gauge
Title Developing young people’s capacities to navigate adversity
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2015
Page numbers 92-97
There are multiple factors that can help interrupt the
intergenerational transmission of poverty. Education and
employment are central: keeping young people in school,
and ensuring that the quality of education received enables access
to further skills training to improve their chances of entering the
labour market. Accessing public goods such as health care, good
nutrition, clean water and sanitation and housing that provides
shelter and dignity is also fundamental. Social, cultural and symbolic
that enable access to networks, improve psychosocial
well-being, provide insight into the so-called “rules of the game”
and open opportunities for advancement and entry into the rights
and responsibilities of democratic citizenship are also critical.
Previous editions of the South African Child Gauge have shown
how the lives of children and young people are affected not only by
their immediate contexts2
of home, school and community, but also
by structural systems such as policies, laws, social welfare and the
world financial system. Political shifts over time also impact young
people’s lives, and this is especially important in the South African
context where young people have experienced a movement from
apartheid to democracy.
In this concluding essay we focus on youth and the
intergenerational transmission of poverty and ask:
• How are young people in South Africa doing?
• What is needed to develop a strong implementation plan for
youth development?
• What new directions could help youth (and those who work
with them) navigate adversity?

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