This Week in Young Leaders

Where Are They Now?

Amy Dennis is not only a former Youth & Government™ participant, but also a college student who happens to be an outstanding video storyteller, photographer, and emerging leader in the world of media and communications. Let's take a look at her story and what's she's been up to since making a difference in her community through education and leadership.  more

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Words that Move Us

This Week, guest blogger, Eric Hutchinson, shared how Exercising Your Creativity can boost your communication skills and help develop relationships. We wanted to follow up a couple of days later and put one of our budding poets, Josh Baker, on your radar. Not only did this guy join the Y and take an arts & humanities class up in Syracuse, New York at the Downtown Writers Center, but also he picked up his camera and put together a story about how the Y helped benefit his life and brought him closer to his community.  more

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Exercising Your Creativity

For decades, the Y has been known as a “gym and swim”; a place where families can come to participate in group sports, take swimming lessons, and get in shape. While the Y remains the nation’s leader in quality programs for healthy living, we have expanded over the years to include several programs and classes for the arts and humanities. Studies show that exercising the mind can be just as important as exercising the body. The Y recognizes the importance of arts education in the United States and provides a variety of ways for individuals and families to grow their creativity. more

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Lend Your Voice

As a Youth and Government™ participant, you have an opportunity to lend your voice to the Y’s national blog, This Week in Young Leaders. Whether you’re exploring ideas such as education, leadership, volunteerism, advocacy, global services, and other issues related to social responsibility, we want you to build upon your sense of civic engagement through our online community. While the premise is simple, the benefits are many. more

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What to Say to Your Mentor

Mentors are there to give you sage advice, but would you believe the dialogue's a two-way street? Here are some quick tips to get the most out of the dynamic between you and your mentor experience.  more

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Stand Up.

What do you stand up for?

During a camp training discussion on bullying, a role model of mine, Megan, described standing up to bullies as the action of a standing ovation. Depending on who you are, there are different ways that you can be a part of this standing ovation. You could be the one standing on stage receiving this standing ovation. You could be the one who was so overwhelmed with what you just saw that you immediately stood up and started the standing ovation. You could also be one who stood up when you saw the reaction of the rest in the crowd. more

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Presidents' Day: The Leadership Quiz

This President's Day, we thought we'd inspire you with a few quotes. But who said what? more

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Advocacy and You

What is advocacy? And where do you fit in?

It's about lending your voice to support a cause. But not just any cause. How about strengthening communities, nurturing the potential of kids, improving your neighbor's health, and giving back to your community? Sound familiar? more

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Keeping the Why in the Y

A camper for life gives his perspective on why summer programs bring so much positive change to our youth.  more

Tags: This Week in Young Leaders, Millennials, Generation Y, Generation X, Generation Next, social responsibility, Leadership, Leaders, leader, student, teens, college, young professionals, Next Generation, volunteerism, caring, giving, Community, communities, neighbors, Neighborhood, the y, YMCA, So Much More, Call to Action, social, social media, Connections, blog, blogger, Guest Blogger, nurturing, genuine, hopeful, determined, Welcoming, self-improvement, happiness, Trending, Progress, Progressive, Education, Global, Conscience, confidence, achievement, Diverse, diversity, advocacy, Grassroots, Community Organizing, collaboration, Civic Engagement, action, mission, camp, camping, campers, summer, mission-baed

Benefits of Volunteering

Young leaders are synonymous with cause-driven volunteers. It might get you into a school you want, look good on a resume, or help out your career in some way, but here are some benefits that might surprise you.  more

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This Week in Moms

How Many Kids?

Rarely a day goes by that I don’t hear it. “Are you having more kids? Maya needs a brother or sister!” I don’t have a problem with getting that question. I have siblings and my daughter has older step-siblings. However, I did begin to wonder why many people believe children need siblings. more

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Smoothie 101

I just bought my first ever blender. Crazy, right? I’ve been having a hard time getting fruit and vegetables into my diet recently so I figured making a smoothie a day would be the perfect solution.  more

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Selecting the Right Summer Camp Program

It may not feel like it, but summer will be here before you know it. And for most parents, that means finding the best summer overnight camp or day camp program for your children. Summer camp is awesome; I attended quite a few in my pre-teen years. I gained confidence and character, made long lasting relationships, accomplished things I didn't think I could, stayed active physically and mentally, and created lifelong memories. However, all kids are different and careful thought and consideration should be taken to make sure they attend a camp that is the right fit. more

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Eating Ain’t Easy

My daughter had recently graduated to eating non-pureed solids. I upped her protein intake due to her pediatrician's suggestion and she was now consistently eating chicken. Like I had been doing every day for about a week, I cut up a chicken strip and put it in a bowl for her to eat. I handed it to my mother who stopped by babysit to feed it to her.  more

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The Great Changing Table Debate

It was just one of those days. It started off well enough, but soon took a disappointing turn. I decided to stop by one of my favorite cafes to grab a cup of coffee before running a few errands. Right after I purchased a coffee, my daughter began to cry. She needed her diaper changed. more

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Adventures in Mealtime

A few months back, I wrote about my daughter’s first encounter with solids. Her palate has expanded since then, but I think I'm ready to go a step further. I want her to be an open-minded eater because I think of myself as an adventurous cook. Added sugar and salt are no-no's for babies, but herbs and spices are fair game. more

Tags: This Week in Moms, Mom, Moms, Mother, Mothers, Mommy, Mommies, parent, Parents, parenting, Kid, Kids, child, Children, the y, YMCA, baby, babies, food, Foods, Purees, recipe, recipes, Ingredients, Herbs, Spice, Spices, Avocado, Guacamole, Eggs, Paprika, Squash, Sage, Garlic, Dill, Potatoes, Vanilla, Quinoa, Cinnamon, Curry, Lentils, Milk, Almond, Coconut (photo credit: Thinkstock/Collection: iStock)

Buy Yourself Some Time

I admit it, I’m a bit of a control freak. There have been many instances where I could have made life a lot easier by handing the reins to someone else, but I insisted on doing it myself. If there’s two things motherhood has taught me, it’s that I can’t do it all and time is often more valuable than money. more

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Snow Day!

If you are in the Northern United States, you’ve likely seen a lot of snow these past few days. I’m afraid to look, but I’m pretty sure my car is snowed-in my garage and last I heard we had a foot of snow. Many schools have already canceled classes and you may be taking a day or two off of work. If you’re like me and have no immediate plans to leave your house, you may end up with bored kids suffering from cabin fever. more

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