Monthly Archives: February 2015

Youth Volunteer Spotlight: Maddie from Kansas City

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Mackenzie Mitchell, a Youth Volunteer with YVC of Western Connecticut and International Youth Advisory Board member, introduces us to Maddie Tolsdorf, another IYAB member who volunteers with YVC of Greater Kansas City. Mackenzie interviewed Maddie and tells us about her experience serving with YVC:

MaddieMeet Maddie Tolsdorf! She is a Youth Volunteer that has been with YVC for two and a half years. Throughout that time Maddie has participated in a multitude of projects. Though many projects come and go, her favorite is still ongoing! The service presents her with a unique opportunity to help children on a weekly basis at a local neighborhood center. When asked about it Maddie responded, “They all know me, and I’ve had such a good time with it.”

In fact her favorite YVC moment happened last year during this specific project. One of the kids had made Maddie a card that named why she was so thankful YVC had come to their town. The thoughtfulness made Maddie immediately thankful for volunteering (read that story here).

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She also dedicates her YVC time to the International Youth Advisory Board. For her, the best part about being a part of the group is getting to know people who work with YVC across the country and into Canada.

Maddie is a volunteer like no other both sincere and dedicated to her work!

Thanks, Mackenzie, for sharing Maddie’s story!

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10 Reasons to Launch a Summer Youth Service Program

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How to start a summer teen service program


The freezing temperatures may say otherwise, but it’s time to start planning summer service projects! Are you wondering whether a summer youth service program might be right for your community? We’ve got 10 reasons why summer volunteering will benefit your community:

  1. 1. Studies have shown that all youth experience summer learning loss if they aren’t involved in some kind of educational program during the summer. Participating in a summer service program that incorporates service-learning into every project is a great way to ensure that youth head back to school in the fall ready to take on the new school year.
  2. 2. Why have youth sitting at home bored when they could be changing the world? Youth have given us all kinds of reviews on their experience volunteering during the summer with YVC, but by far the most common reaction was that it was FUN!
  3. 3. An inclusive, community-wide summer program brings together youth who may not get the chance to interact during the school year. Public school, private school and homeschooled students from urban, suburban and rural areas can serve alongside each other and learn that their differences are much fewer than their similarities.
  4. 4. Time and again youth who serve on summer volunteer projects tell us their lives have been transformed in ways that just aren’t possible through the short-term volunteer projects offered throughout the school year.
  5. 5. Youth who volunteer become adults who volunteer, so getting youth hooked on volunteering during their summers can lead them to becoming lifelong advocates for your community.
  6. 6. Devoting a portion of their summer breaks to volunteering has lifelong effects on youth. We have heard hundreds of stories like this over the years, but one of our favorites is this story a mother told us on how a summer with YVC affected her son.
  7. 7. Since summer projects generally last a whole week, it gives you a great opportunity to build deeper relationships with the agencies the youth are serving, which can lead to collaboration and volunteer opportunities throughout the year.
  8. 8. Youth unemployment remains high, meaning it’s hard for youth to find summer jobs where they can learn basic skills and work ethic. Volunteering is a great way to develop these skills, including timeliness, ability to work under different managers, professionalism, teamwork and more.
  9. 9. YVC has all the tools you need to plan a life-changing summer youth service program. Just follow our easy-to-understand summer handbook, and you’ll be on your way to an unforgettable summer service experience.
  10. 10. Best of all, we are waiving all affiliation dues for summer-only YVC programs this year, so there’s nothing holding you back from making a difference in your community.

YVC is expanding throughout the U.S. and Canada! Email Taylor Neff today to learn more about launching a summer youth service program in your community. Join communities everywhere that are giving youth the chance to change their piece of the world.

YVC Unrolls New Program Options

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Ronald Reagan, Big Hair and Youth Volunteer Corps
Youth service program

Everything was different back in 1987. Nearly 30 years ago, when Hulk Hogan reigned supreme and tight-rolled jeans were the pinnacle of teen fashion, Youth Volunteer Corps was founded as a summer-only program. Today, we’re revisiting our bleach-blonde roots by allowing new YVC Affiliates the chance to choose a level of programming that makes sense for them: summer only, school year only or the traditional year-round option.

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This means if your community simply needs an impactful summer volunteering option when students and teachers have more time, you’ll be able to host just a camp-like Summer of Service program. If a school district or outside organization wants to offer volunteer opportunities to students only while school is in session, YVC is a catalyst for doing so in a club-like format. And of course, if your community needs life-changing youth service opportunities throughout the year, launching a year-round YVC program fills that need.

Best of all, we are waiving affiliation dues for summer and school year programs until 2016 as we pilot these options. We believe that once you see the change YVC can make in the lives of local youth, you won’t think twice about keeping it.

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Email Taylor today if you think your community would be interested in launching a YVC or if you have ideas of new communities that could benefit from a YVC program.

Anniversaries of Impact

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A Youth Volunteer can serve as little as one hour with YVC and see that his life has been changed. So when hundreds of youth serve thousands of hours over the years, cleaning parks, reading to kids and serving meals to the homeless, the impact is profound.

That’s exactly the kind of impact that we’ve witnessed in communities all over the U.S. and Canada through YVC. So we’re celebrating the years of impact from our Affiliates who are celebrating milestone anniversaries in 2015.

Congratulations to the following YVC programs for the profound impact they have had in their communities:

Corvallis teen volunteer program

YVC of Corvallis, Oregon – 20 years

Lawrence 20th Anniversary

YVC of Lawrence, Massachusetts – 20 years

Plymouth 20th Anniversary

YVC of Plymouth, Michigan – 10 years

Iron County 20th Anniversary

YVC of Iron County, Utah – 5 years

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