Our programmes for children and young people have their foundations in a belief that positive relationships, skills and experiences during early years help young people to make healthy choices and positive contributions to society in later life.

The 41 Developmental Assets


Family support

Family life provides high levels of love and support.

Positive family communication

Young person and her or his parent(s) communicate positively, and young person is willing to seek advice and counsel from parent(s).

Other adult relationships

Young person receives support from three or more non-parent adults.

Caring neighbourhood

Young person experiences caring neighbours.

Caring school climate

School provides a caring, encouraging environment.

Parent involved in schooling

Parent(s) are actively involved in helping young person succeed in school.


Community values youth

Young person perceives that adults in the community value youth.

Youth as resources

Young people are given useful roles in the community.

Service to others

Young person serves in the community one hour or more per week.


Young person feels safe at home, school, and in the neighbourhood.

Boundaries and expectations

Family boundaries

Family has clear rules and consequences and monitors the young person's whereabouts.

School boundaries

School provides clear rules and consequences.

Neighbourhood boundaries

Neighbours take responsibility for monitoring young people's behaviour.

Adult role models

Parent(s) and other adults model positive, responsible behaviour.

Positive peer influence

Young person's best friends-model responsible behaviour.

High expectations

Both parent(s) and teachers encourage the young person to do well.

Constructive use of time

Creative activities

Young person spends three or more hours per week in lessons or practice in music, theatre, or other arts.

Youth programmes

Young person spends three or more hours per week in sports, clubs, or organisations at school and/or in the community.

Religious community

Young person spends one or more hours per week in activities in a religious institution.

Time at home

For primary school students: Young person spends some time most days both in high-quality interaction with parents and doing things at home other than watching TV or playing video games. For older students: Young person is out with friends "with nothing special to do" two or fewer nights per week.

Commitment to learning

Acheivement motivation

Young person is motivated to do well in school.

School engagement

Young person is actively engaged in learning.


Young person reports doing at least one hour of homework every school day.

Bonding to school

Young person cares about her or his school.

Reading for pleasure

Young person reads for pleasure three or more hours per week.

Positive values


Young person places high value on helping other people.

Equality and social justice

Young person places high value on promoting equality and reducing hunger and poverty.


Young person stands up for her or his beliefs.


Young person believes accepts and takes personal responsibility.

Healthy Lifestyle or Restraint

For primary school students: Parent(s) tell the child it is important to have good health habits. For older students: Young person believes it is important not to be sexually active or to use alcohol or other drugs.

Social competencies

Planning and decision making

Young person knows how to plan ahead and make choices.

Interpersonal competence

Young person has empathy, sensitivity, and friendship skills.

Cultural competence

Young person has knowledge of and comfort with people of different cultural/racial/ethnic backgrounds.

Resistance skills

Young person can resist negative peer pressure and dangerous situations.

Peaceful conflict resolution

Young person seeks to resolve conflict non-violently.

Positive identity

Personal power

37. Personal power Young person feels he or she has control over "things that happen to me."

Self esteem

Young person reports having a high self-esteem.

Sense of purpose

Young person reports that "my life has a purpose."

Positive view of personal future

Young person is optimistic about her/his personal future.

Positive cultural identity

Young person feels comfortable with and proud of her/his identity, including but not limited to disabilities, ethnicity, faith/religion, family status, gender, language and sexual orientation.*

*Project Cornerstone established this asset for Silicon Valley as a result of local community input.

Find out more about developmental assets