Despite escalating interest in positive youth development, there is little agreement on what comprises the actual "work" of youth development and even less on the role of staff development for youth workers. To strengthen professional practice and hence the quality of youth development programs, an understanding must be developed of the distinguishing features or the essential elements of positive youth development work and the ways in which these elements can best be communicated to the field through staff development. This article suggests a framework for critical reflection on practices that encourage community-based youth workers to explore and apply the lessons of positive youth development in their programs. The article discusses the experience of facilitating adult learning within this curriculum, the responses of participants, and the implications for the youth development field.
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