Values are important because they help young people to grow and develop. They underpin a young person’s sense of right and wrong or what ought to be, and are the criteria by which they judge themselves, their life and the world around them.
Effectively, values act as internal markers for what is good, beneficial, important, useful and desirable for each individual, and they help young people to define and create the future they want to experience.
Every young person is involved in making hundreds of decisions every day, from how they respond to conflict, to who they choose as friends, to what time they allocate to homework. The decisions they make are a reflection of their values and beliefs, and are always directed towards a specific purpose - even if they do not know that yet.
Thinking about and having a basic understanding of what matters to each young person is a valuable exercise. It is helpful to periodically reflect on the things that are important to them and why. Doing this helps young people make thoughtful decisions about their life – both in specific situations and for larger and longer-term life decisions.
The Porcupine Collective values values. We believe personal values are a crucial guide, providing young people with a personal framework or benchmark for decision making. When they make choices and behave in a way that matches their values, things will feel good – they will feel a sense of purpose, satisfaction and contentment. But when their choices don't align with their values, things feel out of kilter, unfulfilling and often downright wrong.
During our one-to-one Porcupine Programme, we work with young people to discuss their personal values; helping them to understand how they align with their decisions and actions to make them feel good about themselves. We also look at their anti-values and explore how they make them feel in a safe way. Using these feelings, we guide young people to use their understanding and consciousness of values to consider their life and personal development choices, as well as examine the role their values play in career selection.