An asset-based approach

Posted by Leanne, Become charity

We’ve just finished blowing out the birthday candles to celebrate the first anniversary of Become’s ground-breaking coaching programme for young people leaving care. As is true with many pilot projects, the year has had its ups and downs. We’ve had many successes, but we’ve also taken away our fair share of learning too.

When we launched the Become Coaching Programme a little over year ago, we felt both trepidation and excitement as it marked a significant shift in our approach to working with care-experienced young people. Instead of focusing on what is going wrong with a young person, we wanted to develop a programme that takes a positive account of individual potential and builds on what is going right.

Taking an asset-based approach felt a little strange at first – often we’re so used to fixing what’s broken, focusing on what’s gone wrong and what’s not working. However, we persevered, knowing from our previous direct work that this was the way to go if we wanted to produce long-term and sustainable change in the lives of care-experienced young people.

When developing the programme, we drew upon everything we’ve learnt from our 25-year experience of working with children in care and young care leavers. The result was a life-coaching programme rooted in evidence-based positive psychology accompanied by a robust theory of change.

We’re still testing the programme, responding to feedback, and tweaking accordingly. However, we firmly believe that by supporting young people to build on their strengths and develop their inner resources, they will improve their wellbeing and ultimately thrive.

I’d be interested to hear your thoughts on taking an asset-based approach when working with young people?

Does your project take a similar approach?

2 thoughts on “An asset-based approach

  1. Building on the child/pupil/participant’s strengths/interests really is key to engagement, once you have engagement then teaching can take place. I deliver poetry workshops in schools around the U.K helping children build literacy confiendence through poetry and Hip Hop (I’m also an ex English teacher) and find that sneaking the learning in amongst their interests really saves a lot of time and disaffection that results from them feeling like what your teaching isn’t relevant.

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