Youth Empowered Solutions (YES!) is a nonprofit organization committed to creating a society where empowered high school-aged youth work alongside adults to create just, equitable and thriving communities. To accomplish this, YES! equips high school youth and their adult allies with the tools necessary to take a stand in their communities and create change that will positively impact adolescent health.
YES! has developed a nationally-recognized model of social change and implements strategies that empower youth to address critical issues facing their communities, placing focus on the roots of problems rather than the symptoms. By participating in the process—researching an issue, gathering community support, working with the media and talking with local and state decision makers—youth feel more powerful in their own lives, more invested in their communities, and more motivated to contribute in a meaningful, tangible way. They take these skills with them into adulthood, changing their views about themselves and their potential impact on the world forever.
YES! uses an outcomes framework and measures opportunities for youth to develop their interests, hone skills and gain experience in creating community change. In FY 2016, YES! helped to bring about 25 critical changes across 18 states through 20 partners and projects, impacting 1,256,129 people. 100% of YES! youth staff reported learning new skills and taking action for change in the past year. 86% of the youth staff are youth of color, rural youth, or from a low-income community. Check out some of their specific results.