How We Got Started

For the last several years, the Town of Manchester has undertaken numerous broad-based efforts to improve the quality of life for children and youth in the community and to address problems that have surfaced, such as gang-related activity, drug-related activity and other issues related to the community's demographic shifts.  In July 2007, the Manchester Board of Directors adopted the National League of Cities’ Platform for Strengthening Families and Improving Outcomes for Children and Youth.  That action resolved that the Town would seek to establish the essential infrastructure for a sustained community effort to achieve the Platform’s objectives.  As an outgrowth of that action, the Town submitted an application to the National League of Cities’ Institute for Youth, Education and Families (NLC-YEF) for assistance in implementing a comprehensive Master Plan for Youth.  Manchester was not included among the communities selected for that initiative; however, the NLC invited the Town to participate with three other communities (Taos, New Mexico; Rapid City, South Dakota; San Fernando, California) to receive technical assistance in developing a comprehensive strategic plan.  Manchester learned that securing a qualified consultant to coordinate the development of a comprehensive Master Plan for Youth would be the most effective way to proceed and ensure that the planning process would produce real change.

The consultant selected was Onsite-Insights from Hampton, VA (www.onsiteinsights.com). This company demonstrated the following qualifications:

1) Onsite-Insights is a national leader in the creation of successful Children, Youth and Family Master Plans as well as being nationally recognized for its expertise in Youth Civic Engagement.

2) It also has extensive experience working with multiple municipal, educational and community agencies, has demonstrated practical knowledge and expertise in youth development, supportive family services, and is experienced with facilitating and conducting focus groups and other modes of gathering public input and consensus building.

3) Onsite-Insights also has served as a consultant to the National League of Cities and fully aligns its approaches to their Youth, Education and Families "Agenda for Children and Youth".