Combating fear, and growing up safe in an unsafe world
Young people who feel threatened, unsafe, or scared often spend a lot of time trapped in fear or in their attempts to protect themselves. They’re less likely to venture forth and take some healthy risks. On the other hand, young people who feel safe are more likely to feel secure enough to try new things. That’s why safety is an important part of feeling empowered. Fear, both imaginary and real, is a normal part of growing up. The key is learning to overcome it. Safety is Asset 10 of Search Institute’s 40 Developmental Assets, the qualities, experiences, and relationships that help young people grow up healthy, caring, and responsible.
Here are the facts
Research shows that young people who feel safe in their surroundings are more likely to make positive contributions. About 51 percent of young people, ages 11–18, say they feel safe at home, at school, and in their neighborhood, according to Search Institute surveys. The key to safety is to create and maintain an environment that minimizes fear and maximizes opportunities to take healthy risks.