The 2015 Cohort is comprised of 16 youth between the ages of 13 and 17. Seven youth returned from last year and nine youth have since been recruited. We had our first orientation meeting on January 31st and have a campout planned every month up to the August weeklong trip to the Channel Islands National Park. We have a lot planned this year. These youth have already demonstrated that they can work together as a group to meet goals and to have a fun time. These are goal-oriented and talented young men who have committed to the program and its philosophy. Several of these youth are artists – either visual artists, writers, poets, musicians, or dancers. Others are also very athletic, participating in a variety of sports including wrestling, martial arts, football, and soccer. In addition, several of these youth are community oriented and are eager to give back. Our adult leaders are also a diverse bunch of individuals who bring unique strengths to the program. All are professionals in careers that involve working closely with youth and families and all have a keen interest in working with the youth in this program. The program is entirely made up of volunteers.
Our first campout took place at Camp Harkness in Waterford from February 28 to March 1st. The returning youth did an amazing job orienting the new recruits to the program and serving as role models. A few of the older youth from last year have taken on roles as junior leaders. We spent a portion of the weekend working towards becoming youth ambassadors against violence – and anticipate engaging in community oriented activities to raise awareness of violence and promote non-violence.
For more pictures of our experiences and our 2015 activities like our Facebook page.