Aligning policies, improving quality, and measuring results
Founded in 2000, the Youth Policy Institute of Iowa (YPII) works to expand and improve the delivery of services and supports for Iowa youth by partnering with public and private entities throughout the state. Our work in the Des Moines area and statewide includes the following types of activities:
- Identify major issues, assess state and community needs, and analyze existing policies affecting youth
- Convene stakeholders and facilitate processes to explore alternatives and develop solutions for youth
- Develop, test and replicate new and innovative approaches to working with youth and young adults lead efforts to better utilize and coordinate existing resources
- Evaluate youth program operations, assess quality and efficiency, report outcomes, and recommend improvements in policy and practice
- Research and distribute information and resources about youth issues and effective youth development programs and practices.
YPII is involved in a wide range of initiatives, but specializes in policies and programs affecting youth transitioning from adolescence to adulthood, particularly those who have been involved in child welfare (foster care) or juvenile justice systems. This includes coordinating the statewide Iowa Aftercare Services Network (IASN), which provides services and supports to hundreds of young adults who age out of foster care. YPII is also the lead agency in Iowa for the national Jim Casey Youth Opportunities Initiative. Now in our 9th year of partnership with the Jim Casey Initiative, YPII is implementing a comprehensive set of strategies to improve results for older youth transitioning from foster care to adulthood.