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The Partnership for Male Youth

1010 Massachusetts Ave, NW Suite 511

Washington, DC 20001

Dennis Barbour, JD | President and CEO


Our Mission

The Partnership’s mission is to work with and on behalf of adolescent and young adult males to optimize their health and ensure that they thrive.

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About us

Why a Partnership for Male Youth?


By the time most American adolescents reach the age of 13 they’ve stopped seeing a pediatrician – over 80% of all pediatric visits are by children under 13.[1] For females 13 and over, however, gynecologists typically become their new health care provider, or “gatekeeper.” This transition is relatively seamlessly with the recommendation being that girls begin seeing a gynecologist between 13 and 15 years of age. [2]  For males, however, there is no similar continuity of care. On the whole, with the exception of episodic school exams, sports physicals and visits to the ER, once they leave the pediatrician’s office adolescent and young adult (AYA) males are left outside of our health care system. 

Yet, according to the most recent data from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, adolescent and young adult (AYA) males, or those between the ages of 10 and 26, are at higher risk than their female contemporaries for:

  • Death by suicide

  • ADHD diagnosis

  • Substance abuse

  • Homicide

  • Risky behaviors

  • Accidental injury

  • Certain STIs [1,3]

It’s not surprising, therefore, that males do not become reunited with our health care system until they suffer from an acute or chronic illness later in life. Ironically, some of those illnesses are caused by a lack of preventive care in the intervening years.

The mission of the Partnership for Male Youth is to identify and address the unique and unmet needs of adolescent and young adult males ages 10 through 26 in order to optimize their health and ensure that they thrive.


In 2011 a number of nationally renowned health experts began to discuss this issue seriously with an eye toward developing solutions. Coming from a variety of health care specialties and disciplines, these individuals had written about or conducted research relating to AYA male health.

Led by this small group, over a two year period beginning in 2011, an interview-based needs assessment process was undertaken. The findings of that assessment were strong and unequivocal: AYA male health care needs to, and can be improved, and leadership needs to emerge to make that happen.

Based on these findings, in late 2013 the Partnership for Male Youth was founded, with the sole mission of advancing the health and well-being of AYA males. By mid-2014, the Partnership for Male Youth had grown to become a network and collaboration of 17 national health-related organizations and six federal agencies that reflect the interprofessional character of AYA male health. Today it is an independent Washington, DC-based IRS Section 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. It has an extensive communications network and social media presence and is becoming known as the national leader on AYA male health issues.

Today the Partnership for Male Youth is the only national organizations whose sole focus is on advancing the health and wellbeing of AYA males. The work of the Partnership for Male Youth has a very specific focus on what it characterizes as the “Double U’s” – for the terms unique and unmet. Many other national organizations address adolescent health issues either in non-sex specific ways, or, if they do address adolescent health issues in a sex specific way, only in terms of females. What makes the work of the Partnership for Male Youth distinct from and of added value to these efforts is the fact that it focuses on the health care needs of AYA males that are both unique to their sex and unmet.

The mission of the Partnership is accomplished through six principle endeavors:

  1. Research to identify 1) the unique, unmet health care needs of adolescent and young adult (AYA) males; and 2) efforts that have been made or are underway to address those needs

  2. Coalition building through the engagement of partner organizations and others

  3. Identification of actual and potential venues for the delivery of health care to AYA males

  4. Training and resource development for health care providers in those venues

  5. Engagement of AYA males in their own health care

  6. Public awareness and advocacy


Size and age-sex distribution of pediatric practice: a study from Pediatric Research in Office SettingsBocian ABWasserman RCSlora EJKessel DMiller RSArch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 1999,

2 The Initial Reproductive Health Visit. Committee on Adolescent Health Care. American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.  2014.

3 Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System (YRBSS), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2015