November Developmental Asset of the Month: Positive Cultural Identity

November has been designated as the month to focus on the Developmental Asset of Positive Cultural Identity…

Asset #41: Young people feel comfortable with and proud of their identity, including but not limited to disabilities, ethnicity, faith/religion, family status, gender, language, and sexual orientation.

The Importance of Positive Positive Cultural Identity.

It is important for youth to feel that they belong.  Positive identity brings self-assurance, a sense of belonging, a positive view of personal future, and better success in school Developing a positive cultural identity — a critical element of personal identity — can be difficult for young people, especially when they may be bridging more than one culture.

The way that youth are treated in regard to their ethnicity, religion, disability, sexual orientation, or gender directly affects their ability to develop a positive personal identity.  As adults, it is critical that we model recognition, understanding, and celebration of all cultural identities, including the cultures to which we and/or our children do not belong.

Sharing and celebrating different cultural identities increases self-esteem and promotes cultural competence among all young people.  The diversity of Silicon Valley is a benefit to our youth as they are exposed to many different cultures. While we can never fully know how life is experienced by someone of another culture, with an open and curious attitude toward multicultural issues, we can understand each other on a deeper level.

This article was provided courtesy of Project Cornerstone’s Asset-a-Month program. For more information, visit www.projectcornerstone.org.