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Re-Framing Toolkit

Who they believe they are and

who we say they are MATTERS!

Power of Words &


Framing Their Greatness

Group of Friends

Youth violence impacts the entire community and there’s data that we can reference to quantitatively understand outcomes such as homicide rates, youth incarceration, school dropout rates and so on. We can even gain a qualitative understanding of the effect of trauma on young people, families and communities as a result of youth violence. But what does not receive adequate attention that we have not been able to measure is the emotional and spiritual doubt that consumes so many of our youth.  You may be familiar with the saying “If you don’t stand for something, you will fall for anything.”  Unfortunately, this is an appropriate metaphor for youth

who for one reason or another do not believe they Can Be Great! When young souls have doubt about their value, it’s nearly impossible for them to explore the righteous purpose on their lives. As a result, we see the negative outcomes of what happens when they fall prey to systems that fail them and unrighteous ideas about who they are and what they can achieve in life.


Framing how we view young people - even those involved in high risk lifestyles, must be guided by faith. The Don’t Die Young Initiative focuses on the belief that every young person was born with a divine purpose and that this purpose can only be realized through overall individual well-being. If we are going to serve as resources and advocates for young people and their families, we must ensure that we have the right perspective about youth so that our communication for and about them is effective.

Reframing Toolkit


The Don't Die Young Reframing Toolkit was inspired by the research and content published by FrameWorks Institute.  FrameWorks Institute is a nonprofit think tank that maps the public consciousness surrounding social issues of all kinds. With consent from FrameWorks Institute, content within this toolkit was guided by the following toolkits published on the FrameWorks Institute website:


1.     Reframing Family, School, and Community Engagement

2.     Shifting Gears on Juvenile Justice


The Don’t Die Young Toolkit is a resource for professionals serving youth that provides communication suggestions on how to frame the issue of youth violence, what to say, and what to leave unsaid. 


To effectively frame communication around the issue of youth violence, we have provided attachments to this toolkit that professionals can reference to support their communication strategies. Don't Die Young recommends using these attachments in the following steps:


Step #1. Knowing what you’re up against by understanding how people think and feel about the issues related to youth violence.  The Swamp - Wrong Thinking About Youth attachment reveals the FrameWorks Institute’s research on the multiple, sometimes contradictory, default patterns of thinking that Americans use to reason about the juvenile justice system and child and adolescent development. 


Step #2. Triggering certain ways of thinking and bypassing others. It’s very hard to argue against a feeling or belief once it’s activated. The Talking Points - Shifting the Perspective on Youth Violence attachment offers guidance on effectively pre-framing communication that shifts thinking away from common but unproductive ways of thinking.  


Step #3. With knowledge about common feelings or thoughts that do not support the well-being of youth, it's important to be prepared to ReFrame communications. The Tactical Thinking - Sample Reframing Q&A's attachment provides three (3) Q&A samples that includes: 


* Questions

* False Start Answer vs. The Reframed Answer 

* Analysis of False Start Answer vs. Analysis of Reframed Answer

reframing toolkit



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