Visions and Pathways service is based on a culturally responsive and family-centered philosophy of Positive Youth Development. This approach:
- Focuses on the development of the individual and family preservation;
- Emphasizes ensuring each young person is supported in developing a sense of competence, usefulness, belonging, and power; and
- Helps young people achieve their full potential and prevents them from engaging in risky behaviors by strengthening protective factors.
The traumatic experiences our participants have endured often result in negative patterns of thinking that can be an obstacle to their ability to trust staff and accept help. Traumatized individuals may fear being harmed by others, blame themselves for the trauma, suffer from low self-esteem or shame), and feel helplessness and hopelessness about their future. It is the staff’s job to develop a trusting relationship with each youth and offer nonjudgmental and consistent support. When this happens, staff is more likely to be seen as trustworthy, and a cooperative relationship can form, creating the possibility for healing to begin.