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Adolescence, including preadolescence, is a time of profound opportunity when youth (aged 10–18 years) must have positive experiences that will shape them into contributing young adults. Yet too many people associate adolescence with problems or risk-taking behaviors. Positive youth development provides pediatric health professionals with guiding principles to create an environment where all youth can maximize adolescence to develop to their full potential. It supports all youth to develop into thriving natural explorers, a task as meaningful as when an infant learns to move or a toddler learns to communicate.

Keywords: positive youth development, resilience, strength-based programming

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