Violence exposure is associated with psychological and behavioural maladjustment in adolescents. Yet, not all adolescents exposed to violence experience negative symptoms. Resilience is an outcome that is in part determined by multiple protective factors, or developmental assets, that protect adolescents from the negative influence of encountered stressors and allow them to attain positive developmental outcomes. A qualitative study was conducted to acquire an in-depth understanding of the developmental assets across different layers in the ecological system that promote positive psychological and behavioural functioning in South African adolescents exposed to violence. Semi-structured individual interviews were conducted with a multi-ethnic group (black, white, and people of mixed heritage) of South African adolescents (boy: n = 17; girl: n = 13; age: 14–19 years) from seven schools in Cape Town. Adolescents reported both internal and external assets that helped them adaptively cope with violence exposure. The internal assets entailed individual characteristics and skills, including commitment to learning, positive values, positive identity, social competencies, and emotional insight. The external assets were boundaries and expectations, social support from adolescents’ peers, family, school, and community, and adolescents’ constructive use of time. The findings of the study may inform strengths-based interventions to enhance emotional and behavioural skills in adolescents at risk for violence exposure. Moreover, involving key stakeholders in the interventions from major developmental domains can be particularly helpful to optimise the social support that are needed for adolescents to be resilient.