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Giving Kids the Edge they Need to Succeed

The Search Institute found that there are 40 key factors – developmental assets – that have a powerful influence on the lives of children and youth. Developmental assets are the relationships, competencies, values and experiences for growth and development that young people need to grow up to be caring, competent adults. These assets protect youth from getting involved in risky behaviors and promote within them thriving behaviors.

Search’s research with over 1 million young people reveals that the more assets a child has, the better! More assets increases the likelihood that youth will succeed in school and make healthy, wise choices. More assets also decrease the likelihood that youth will get into trouble or harm themselves. The asset difference is a big one – they add up to producing healthy, caring and competent adults in the making! Assets are something that every child deserves and needs . . . it’s not just for those deemed “at-risk.

WHAT CAN I DO?Assets are built through caring relationships, a variety of experiences in schools, youth programs, churches, sports, the arts and by building skills, competencies and values.
The assets provide a powerful framework and lens for how everyone in the community can engage children and youth in day to day activities and increase their potential for success. The assets also clearly show that there are important roles for all of us to play in shaping young people's lives.

That’s where YOU come in. You can be an asset builder, starting right now! YOU can be that important someone who is always fondly remembered in the life of a child. Starting now. The ideas shared on this website are simple things you can do every day to have a powerful impact. It’s simply a matter of Taking Action.

The developmental assets are the foundation of all the writing and consulting that I do through the Center for Asset Development. You can read more at In future blogs, I'll give more practical ideas for building assets in the lives of children and youth.


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