Investing in the Well-Being and Well-Becoming of America’s Young People: Recommendations for Philanthropy, Policy, and Practice

The Youth Transition Funder’s Group (YTFG) is a national network of foundations whose mission is to help all youth make a successful transition to adulthood by age 25. This well-being investment framework was developed by our members in partnership with leading researchers, policy leaders, and young adults. Building upon work underway in the fields of child welfare, youth justice, education, employment, and health, YTFG sought to harness our network’s collective experience and growing knowledge and understanding of youth who experience multiple public systems to create a unifying framework for all youth-serving systems and settings to work toward the well-being and well-becoming of our nation’s most vulnerable young people.

The first version of this framework was published in 2015. Since then, YTFG members and partners have learned much about the continued importance of well-being and well-becoming as organizing concepts and can now offer critical updates to our original thinking and the needs of the field in order to fully operationalize this type of holistic approach.

The framework begins by highlighting the critical relationship between racial justice and well-being. It then presents a narrative exploration of the role and responsibility of each youth-serving system to support the well-being and well-becoming of youth and young adults. Next, it presents the updated framework across five key domains, highlighting the roles and responsibilities of families, communities, private sector partners, and public systems. Finally, the framework offers a set of concrete and actionable recommendations for youth-serving system leaders, policymakers, and public and private funders for improving policy and practice to support the well-being and well-becoming of young people throughout adolescence and into adulthood.

Access the executive summary here and the full report here.