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NCJ Number: 222617 Find in a Library
Title: Neighborhoods and Youth: How Neighborhood Demographics and Social Processes Affect Youth Outcomes
Journal: The Prevention Researcher  Volume:15  Issue:2  Dated:April 2008  Pages:7-11
Author(s): Ray Swisher Ph.D.
Date Published: April 2008
Page Count: 5
Type: Literature Review; Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Using a life-course and ecological perspective as an organizing framework, this article reviews recent research that pertains to how youth developmental outcomes are related to the interactions of individual, family, and neighborhood characteristics.
Abstract: The study found that family characteristics generally related to positive youth outcomes--such as having two parents in the home who provide social support and behavioral monitoring for children--can be significantly diminished by neighborhood characteristics that do not reinforce the values promoted within the family. Neighborhood resources include schools, organized positive youth-oriented social and developmental activities, employment opportunities, and the interaction of neighborhood families to provide a climate of normative behaviors and attitudes. These neighborhood resources are typically abundant in affluent neighborhoods and are lacking in poor neighborhoods. Affluent families and neighborhoods offer more pathways for youth to envision and progress toward expectations related to educational achievement and its link to stable employment and higher paying jobs. The pursuit of these goals is also linked to certain behaviors that involve self-control, normative social skills, and responsible behaviors toward others. Thus, family characteristics, individual characteristics, and neighborhood characteristics interact to determine youth developmental outcomes. Neighborhood resources and characteristics are particularly important for younger children who are in the early stages of developing attitudes and expectations for their lives based in what neighborhood institutions, resources, and neighborhood role models for achievement offer them. Delinquency prevention efforts must focus on the varying ways in which all of these factors interact to produce negative and positive outcomes for youth. 1 figure and 37 references
Main Term(s): Juvenile delinquency prevention
Index Term(s): Community relations; Community resources; Community support; Demography; Economic influences; Juvenile delinquency factors; Poverty and crime; Social conditions
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