Local YMCAs Launch Youth Leadership Programs

The Triunfo YMCA and Miller Family YMCA are launching youth and government leadership program for teens.

Youth-and-Government-photo1The Triunfo YMCA, serving Agoura Hills, Oak Park and Westlake Village, will kick off its Youth & Government leadership program for teens with a Thursday, September 3rd barbecue. The barbecue will run from 6-8 p.m. at Sumac Park (6000 Calmfield Ave. Agoura Hills). Youth & Government is for high schoolers interested in how government works while developing leadership, public speaking and networking skills. Teens can sign up for the program during the barbecue.

The Triunfo YMCA’s Youth & Government program attracts over 100 local high school students from Oak Park, Westlake, Oaks Christian and Agoura high schools. “Participants get a real-world look at our state government, take on the roles government positions and strengthen their debate skills. They put their training to work in a life-changing conference in Sacramento in February where they get exclusive use of the state capitol building,” said John Napotnik, Triunfo Y program director. “All high school students and their parents are welcome to attend the barbecue to learn more. They can meet current delegates and advisors and ask questions about the program.”

Youth & Government began by the YMCA in California in 1948. It is a statewide youth education program involving more than almost 80 YMCAs and more than 2,300 high school freshman, sophomores, juniors and seniors. Students form delegations through their local Y and meet weekly. Delegations attend two hands-on conferences at the Fresno convention center before attending the summit at the state capitol in February.

Triunfo Y delegates will meet on Thursdays at Yerba Buena Elementary School (6098 Reyes Adobe Rd., Agoura Hills) at 7:30 p.m.

Registration is open from September 3 through September 17. For more information, contact Napotnik at 818-707-9622, ext. 2318, [email protected] Programs are also forming at the Conejo Valley YMCA (serving Thousand Oaks, Moorpark and Santa Rosa Valley), 805-523-7613, Miller Family YMCA of Newbury Park, 805-480-1030 and the Simi Valley Family YMCA, 805-583-5338. The California Youth & Government website is http://calymca.org/.

Miller YMCA Youth & Government Delegates

Miller YMCA Youth & Government Delegates

The Miller Family YMCA of Newbury Park’s Youth & Government program is hosting an information night and barbecue on Wednesday, August 19 (320 Via Las Brisas, Newbury Park) and another information night at Sycamore Canyon School (4601 Via Rio, Newbury Park) September 2. Both meetings are from 7-8 p.m. The Y’s Youth & Government program is a leadership-building program is for teens in 9th through 12th grades.

About 50 teens typically take part in the Miller Y’s program The teens meet weekly to learn about the legislative process and what it takes to participate in such roles as elected officials, judges, print and broadcast media, lobbyists and political party members.

The teens use their new skills when they gather with delegations from more than 90 California YMCAs at training sessions and again at the Model Legislature & Court Conference held over five days in mid-February at the State Capitol in Sacramento. More than 2,600 delegates descend on the legislative chambers and state capitol conferences rooms to debate bills and pass laws.

“Youth & Government is a tremendous opportunity for teens to learn about democracy and the judicial, legislative and political process,” said Veronica Rodarte, lead advisor to the Miller Y’s Youth & Government program. “It provides delegates with a hands-on educational experience that they can’t get in a classroom.”

For more information, contact the Miller Family Y at 805-480-0309, or email Veronica Rodarte at [email protected] Other Youth & Government delegations are forming at Triunfo YMCA (serving Oak Park, Agoura Hills and Westlake Village) 818-707-9622 and the Conejo Valley YMCA (serving Thousand Oaks, Moorpark and Santa Rosa Valley), 805-523-7613.

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