Ontario, Canada

Where things were:

The government of Ontario and the Ministry of Youth Services in Canada were looking for a systematic response on what works following a summer of youth violence in Canada in 2011. 

What was needed:

They discovered Stephen’s past work on Project Oracle, and commissioned the University of York to create a similar version. In 2013 YouthRex was founded. Between 2013 and 2018 Stephen supported YouthRex in Ontario, Canada. The goal was to build a youth ecosystem that values and centres young people in youth work, and in the evaluation process itself. 

Stephen in action:

Over a period of two to three years, Stephen and colleagues visited the Youth Rex team, advising on strategy, their impact measurement approach and setting up governance. The work also involved speaking and learning events and attending Board and Ministry of Youth and Children meetings with YouthRex. 

What happened next:

Today YouthRex is stronger than ever, with more youth development programmes being implemented, as well as a greater understanding of the complexities of youth work that stretch across personal, professional, and political identities. YouthRex also provides an understanding of how youth work is enmeshed in other systems and how factors beyond the scope of the youth sector impact and shape youth work on the ground.