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Creating better cities with children and youth – a training manual

Image is illustrative. Photo by Taryn Elliott from Pexels

Creating Better Cities with Children and Youth is a practical manual on how to conceptualize, structure and facilitate the participation of young people in community development. It is intended for use by urban planners, municipal officials, community development staff, non-governmental organizations, educators, youth-serving agencies, youth advocates, and others who are involved in community development: for everyone who feels concern for young people and the quality of their lives, and who believes in the value of community education and empowerment as the foundation of a vibrant and resilient civil society.

This manual provides a framework for planning participatory projects and building institutional and political support for implementation. It outlines the necessary steps for organizing a participatory project, and shows how young people can be engaged in analysing and prioritizing their needs and implementing appropriate responses. The manual’s core ideas and methods have been field-tested in a wide range of urban settings in both developing and industrialized cities through the work of the Growing Up in Cities project. Examples from project sites help to illustrate the methods and demonstrate how they can be customized to local needs. They also highlight the universal applicability and value of young people’s participation and provide lessons and insights to help ensure a successful project.