YPC Supervisory Committee’s Evaluation Report to RepCom — March 2013



Web Version

Youth Program Coordinator Supervisory Committee (YPCSC)
Report to Representative Committee of Pacific Yearly Meeting

March 2013

For details, please see full text of report and attached appendices.

Introduction: At PYM’s 2009 Annual Session, Friends reached unity on a three-year “experiment” for a Youth Program Coordinator (YPC) and set up a Supervisory Committee which was charged with overseeing the program and presenting PYM with a formal program evaluation and recommendations for change. The first coordinator, Sarah Beutel, was hired in April 2010, and Alyssa Nelson (Davis MM) has served as YPC since August 2011.

Program Description and Accomplishments: The Supervisory Committee has interpreted the role of the YPC to be someone who facilitates intergenerational connections and the development of the spiritual lives of our youth in order to build PYM’s capacity to support and integrate youth into the life of the Yearly, Quarterly, and Monthly Meetings. Important accomplishments of the YPC have included participating with and supporting youth and their adult allies in planning, traveling to, and attending yearly, quarterly, and regional gatherings; maintaining regular contact with teen, young adult, and older Friends through email, phone, video conference, and in-person meetings; visiting Monthly Meetings and Worship Groups (MM & WGs); and promoting intergenerational efforts throughout PYM, including in affiliated Quaker organizations.

Evaluation Outreach: To aid our evaluation of the youth program, we conducted two focus groups with teens and Friendly Adult Presences (FAPs) at Fall 2012 SCQM and CPQM, provided queries and solicited feedback from all MM & WGs, and conducted individual interviews with 23 Friends, including teens, young adults, and older adults. 24 MM & WGs responded. We also asked Finance and Nominating Committees for input.
Across the three sources of evaluation outreach data there was uniform appreciation for the contributions of the Coordinator to PYM, and, with the exception of 3 MM & WGs that responded, there was enthusiastic support for continuation of the program. Teens feel more integrated into the work and life of the Yearly and Quarterly Meetings and more integration between SCQM and CPQM. Friends noted that in addition to increased activity among PYM teens, there were also increased intergenerational connections. Friends consistently expressed special appreciation for the work of Alyssa Nelson, and many people noted that the strength of the program was a reflection of her skills and deep knowledge of the PYM community.

The Supervisory Committee met in person this February to produce the evaluation report and try to discern where Spirit was leading us. We considered the following query that had been posed by one of the interviewees: “As a result of the program, how has the truth been advanced among us? How is our spiritual understanding and inward light shining more brightly?” We see the youth program and the YPC as helping Friends deepen our individual, corporate, and intergenerational experiences of our testimonies of community, unity, integrity, and equality. We have become a more integrated and whole community. Teens from northern and southern California are more likely to worship and play together, and there have been more intergenerational activities at all levels of PYM. One Friend observed that thanks to the program her teenage son “is more at ease, and sees adults more now as people, and less as a distant but related species!” We are more aware of the inequalities that exist among us based on age, and we are acting to decrease them.

Recommendations:  The Youth Program Coordinator Supervisory Committee recommends approval of the following minute:

Proposed Minute: Pacific Yearly Meeting will continue to support the paid Youth Program Coordinator position.

The committee expects to participate in the usual PYM budgeting process via Finance Committee and will recommend that the program’s budget be adjusted for inflation as needed, and for any other changes in program costs deemed necessary.

We recognize that there may be some outstanding concerns and questions that will need to be addressed in the process of coming to unity. We also recommend that PYM should begin seasoning for later resolution a number of practical and strategic questions our committee has been discussing, such as benchmarks for evaluations, nominations to the Supervisory Committee, and personnel policy issues raised by long term employment of a YPC. Our committee sees a need within PYM to expand the reach of the youth program, as did most Friends contributing to this evaluation.

We, the Supervisory Committee, are grateful for our opportunities to serve PYM through this program. We deeply appreciate all the comments, suggestions, and support that we have received from countless Friends throughout the evaluation process that provided the basis for this report and recommendations. We look forward to seeing how Way opens.

Supervisory Committee Members:

Older Adults: Kate Watkins (Clerk, Santa Monica), Lanny Jay (Redwood Forest), Mary Klein (Palo Alto), Steve Leeds (San Francisco), Jim Summers (La Jolla)

Teens: Clare Griese (La Jolla), Nathan Walker (Palo Alto)

Young Adults: Cara Arcuni (Palo Alto), Sophie Brinker (Woolman/Santa Cruz)

Former Members: Elizabeth Boardman (Davis, Older Adult), Marc Lichterman (Berkeley, when a teen), Rebekah Percy (La Jolla, when a teen), and Marie Vastola (Live Oak / Monterey Peninsula, when a teen)


TABLE OF CONTENTS (Full Report — Download via link at top of page)

  1. Summary
  2. Introduction and Overview
  3. Program Description and Accomplishments
  4. Evaluation Data from Outreach
  5. Recommendations
  6. Closing
  7. Appendices: Please see separate documents:  To request a copy of the the appendices, contact the Youth Program Coordinating Committee Clerk or Coordinator.
    1. Excerpts from Original Proposal
    2. Accomplishments Since Program Inception (Goals & Objectives Met)
    3. Goals for 2012-2013 and Beyond
    4. Calendar of Events with YPC Involvement
    5. Record of YPC Visits to Meetings and Worship Groups
    6. Publications List, with Links to PYM Website
    7. Interview Data (Summary and List of Interviewees)
    8. Focus Group Data (Summary and List of Queries)
    9. Monthly Meetings and Worship Groups Response Data