First Advisor

Lisa Bates

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Community Development and University Honors


Community Development


Young volunteers in community development -- Oregon -- Portland -- Case studies, Citizens' associations -- Oregon -- Portland -- Case studies, Regional planning -- Citizen participation




This research addresses the intersection between youth engagement and Portland neighborhood associations, and explores future implications for young people’s civic engagement and participation in decisions that affect their lives. Since much of the literature on public participation does not specifically address young people’s assets or needs, this research provides an exploratory view on youth perceptions of place and neighborhood associations. Through semi-structured interviews, three members of the Multnomah Youth Commission, the official youth policy body for the City of Portland and Multnomah County, shared their insights, regarding current awareness of and future hopes for Portland neighborhood associations. The lack of awareness and youth engagement with these organizations raises important questions regarding youth-friendly outreach and relevance to current and future younger generations. This exploration provides a foundation for further research into these issues, which will shape opportunities for young people to build civic leadership and partnerships within our community.


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