Shift, Empowering Youth
enabling our youth


A core value of each and every one of our programs is the participation of adults alongside the youth. In programs like Connect and Family Connect, those adults are teachers and parents. In YELP and Stride, the adults that participate are volunteers from the community. Some may be known to the youth ahead of time, many are new faces. Each of them has something unique to offer.

Benefits to Our Programs

Teens are accustomed to the adults in their lives being in the role of parent, teacher, coach or simply just another person telling them what to do or not do. Rarely do they have the opportunity to have adults be their peer and participate alongside them in something new or relevant to them.

Adult participants in our programs model the lifelong learning we are asking the youth to engage in. They are also helping to bankrupt the stereotypes – that youth have about adults and that adults have about youth. The healthy bonds that are created may be some of the few the youth have in their life and help expand their understanding of what’s possible in healthy relationships.

Benefits to Our Volunteers

Our volunteers are often inspired by the possibility of having a positive impact on the lives of the youth in their community. This role will certainly achieve that. However, adults are often surprised by just how much they personally get out of our programs. Volunteers share how much the experience has had a transformational effect – on their career, their personal life, as parents and as partners and friends.

How Do I Sign Up?

We encourage you to call our office to inquire about upcoming programs needing volunteers. Once we’ve spoken, we may direct you to fill out and return an application.

YELP Adult Application 2016
Stride Volunteer Application

Additionally, all adult volunteers are required to complete a background check.

programs for youth