The Ventura Family YMCA is paving the way for the leaders of tomorrow through its Youth & Government program. Since 1948 this nationwide initiative has been the top youth leadership and development program for 9th through 12th grade high school students. Through hands on experience, each participant is enlightened on how the U.S. government is run. They review the passing of government bills, practice public speaking and case work, and they even travel to Sacramento to put all of their skills into practice at the California State Capitol Building.
This program is unique because of the impact from the Y’s leadership staff and the knowledge each participant gains. There is also fundraising in place to provide scholarships (while they last) for students who may not be able to afford the program otherwise, giving those students an educational advantage like no other.
“We want to make sure that everyone in our community has the equal opportunity to better themselves, and one example of us helping is through our Youth & Government leadership program or by raising money to provide scholarships so that those who would not be able to attend because of the cost, may do so,” says Alicia Cattoni, the Y’s Marketing and Communications Director.
The Y’s Youth Programs Coordinator, Sherry Gutsch, speaks about the importance of nurturing our youth to become future leaders.
Youth & Government runs from September through February and includes weekly meetings, two training weekends in Fresno and a 5-day trip to Sacramento. Current Ventura Y members may join for a discounted rate of $198/month, while Program Members may join for $210/month. Scholarships are available, while the funds last. Spots are filling up fast so make sure to register as soon as possible.
To learn more about Youth & Government, logon to ciymca.org/ventura, visit the Ventura Family YMCA at 3760 Telegraph Road, or contact Sherry Gutsch by email at Sherry. Gutsch@ciymca.org, or call 642.2131 ext. 16.