Page 1

2013 ANNUAL REPORT Table of Contents Letter from the Executive Director.........................................................................1 Letter from the Board President............................................................................2 Mission & Vision.....................................................................................................3 Core Values.............................................................................................................4 YDN Approach........................................................................................................5 Youth Leadership Programs...................................................................................7 Training – Inspiring Leaders and Cultivating Learning..................................... 11 Fundraising........................................................................................................... 16 Finance Graphs & Charts.................................................................................... 17 Impact Infographics............................................................................................. 20

Letter from the Executive Director There are so many people to thank for making 2013 such an inspiring and impactful year for the YDN Team. Together we strengthened systems that interact with youth like schools, libraries, after-school programs, universities, parks and recreation divisions, faith-based organizations and so many more. As a rich network of youth development practitioners we are now at a stage in Sacramento where the strengths-based youth development approach is evident in policies, procedures, and programs across the region. In short, the vision that we set for ourselves almost a decade ago is now in motion and as a result thousands of Sacramento’s youth are experiencing more supports and opportunities than ever. This means young people are engaged in positive activities, have hope about their future, and are making the right decisions about their well-being. Where I’m from we have a chant that goes a little something like this- “Aint no power like the power of the youth ‘cuz the power of the youth don’t stop!” Not only do I enjoy shouting this at the top of my lungs but I also love seeing it in action. In 2013 we worked with some amazing youth and organizations to ensure that the voice and choice of young people would be listened to and acted upon. This called us to at times agitate and challenge individuals and systems to look at their personal values related to youth sharing power. More importantly, we applaud the work done by those systems and individuals to share power with their young people and to offer new opportunities for youth to be seen as resources and not just recipients of services. When you turn the pages of this yearly report you will see another strong theme threaded throughout the document. Our work with the Donald Clifton Strengthsfinders Assessment continues to change lives and create amazing places for young people. By marrying strengths and youth development we are now adding a new undeniably powerful feature to the training and technical assistance we offer our region. This approach is increasing staff engagement in our workforce and training leaders and managers to lead through a strengths-based lens. Our StrengthsBased Institute and curriculum is showing amazing results and we can’t wait to share it with you and your community soon! Thank you for your passion and partnership in accomplishing a promise to our youth and the field that serves them. In community, Adrian Ruiz



Letter from the Board President On behalf of our Board of Directors, officers and staff, I am happy to report on another fruitful and inspiring year for the Youth Development Network (YDN). Our Executive Director, Adrian Ruiz, has continued to foster the YDN message, setting marginalized youth up for success in an unforgiving economic climate. The YDN strengths-based approach to youth development has been in increased demand, as more and more organizations recognize its positive impact on our young people. It always strikes me as a great accomplishment to see young people emerging from our Youth Leadership Program (YLP) as future leaders. This year, under our YLP, we saw 20 youth ambassadors and 15 youth facilitators run the strengths-based youth leadership experience for more than 300 youth. It is inspiring to see our returning YLP alumni use their strengths and leadership abilities to independently run a complex camp program for such a large group. Few other organizations can demonstrate such a sustained track record of success on behalf of the underserved youth within our communities. Our message continues to make an impact, and it makes me proud to be a small part of the pipeline that helps these young people on their way to success. With the continued help of our valued sponsors, we look forward to another great year for the YDN! Very truly yours, Ryan C. Wood

YDN Board of Directors Officers

Adrian Ruiz Executive Director, YDN

Ryan Wood Board President, Attorney Downey Brand LLP

Vicki Stockbridge Board Secretary, YDN

Jeff Jensen Board Vice-President, Crowe Horwath LLP Brent McClure CFO/Treasurer, Senior Vice President, Umpqua Bank

Addie Ellis, EdD Education Change and Organizational Development Consultant


Sotiris Kolokotronis Owner, SKK Developments

Camille Benvenuti Community Volunteer

Kim Mohler Recreation Superintendent, City of Sacramento Parks & Recreation

Rob Chase Financial Representative MassMutual Northern California

Lilly Rankins PriceWaterHouseCoopers Risk Assurance Sandra Vargas Sacramento Catholic Conference Jolene Wachowicz Wells Fargo Bank The YDN Board of Directors meets on a quarterly basis throughout the year. If you are interested in learning more about supporting the YDN as a volunteer Board member please e-mail Vicki at info@ydnetwork.org for additional details.

Mission & Vision Youth Development Network (YDN) was formed as a California public benefit nonprofit corporation in 2007. YDN’s purpose and mission is inspired by the power of strengths and relationships. We believe that young people who know their strengths and talents–and who feel connected to their peers, adults, and community–will develop into amazing individuals who will lead and change the world.

Lead &

CHANGE the world.

YDN is changing the world for young people by creating places and settings where youth can thrive and succeed. We make this happen by coaching youth-serving professionals and community youth-serving organizations. We are a central support for the youth development strengths-based approach. Our training, coaching, technical assistance and youth leadership programs improve the quality of youth experiences. We are proud of the relationships and collaborations we have cultivated with youthserving organizations, schools, faith-based groups, juvenile justice agencies, and businesses. We facilitate sustainable organizational change, while working toward the common goal of strengthening youth by recognizing and applying their talents and highlighting the power of positive relationships and role models. The vision of YDN is to have communities filled with youth who know how to achieve personal and academic success; who know how to connect to adults and to their community; who have a positive vision of their future; and who grow up to be healthy, productive and civic-minded adults. 2013 ANNUAL REPORT


Core Values In working to improve the community, YDN lives and breathes the same core principles we inspire others to bring to their work with youth. YDN hires and grows highly talented people who are committed to youth success and the following core values, which are the heart of our success: Relationships: We build open and honest relationships that foster knowledge and trust. In this way everyone’s unique ideas are brought to bear, and the results are awesome. Social Justice: We promote inclusion. Our work honors diversity, equal voice and equal choice for all. Change: We embrace and drive change. To do this, we must be more curious than certain. Continuous improvement often means doing things differently. Fun: We bring a positive team and family spirit to our work. We create ways to enjoy the work and engage the heart and soul.


We build open and honest relationships that foster knowledge and trust.

YDN Approach Changemakers paving the way – helping youth-serving professionals and organizations create well-rounded teams and provide strengths-based experiences for youth. Youth Development Network (YDN) team members are proud to lead and facilitate: • Building Dynamic Teams -- where organizations learn to build teams that are connected, creative, and innovative • Extraordinary Leadership Camps -- where young people reach their fullest potential in challenging and supportive environments • Positive Youth-Adult Partnerships -- where young people are met with opportunities to do better in school, get more involved in the community, and recognize the value of diversity • Engaged Learning Communities -- environments where individuals are connected and motivated to learn

YDN SERVICES PROVIDED YDN provides a wide range of training-related services and programs for its allies in the cause of supporting the success and wellbeing of all young people. YDN trainings and programs motivate participants, help them implement change, and develop buy-in from key staff and managers. Other services that YDN provides are: presentations and orientations; planning and designing forums and networking events; developing camps; and training youth as leaders; facilitators, and/or mediators. All of the YDN programs and services are customizable to the needs of organizations and communities and the specifics of the mission, goals and objectives of youth programs.

2,744 participants motivated by YDN strengths-based youth development approved.



A lot of kids they hold a lot of things in and when you hold a lot of things in that tends to build up. I want to be that person that people can run to, that people can trust, somebody they can confide in. I want to be a person that can help you if no one is there to turn to. I want to be that person in a kids life to say “hey she told me I was going to make it when everyone told me I wasn’t.” I want to be the light in people’s situations.

Tatiyanna Anderson Camp participant

YOUTH LEADERSHIP PROGRAMS Youth Leadership Programs – Providing youth engagement, youth voice and choice: In our mission to change the lives of youth, YDN does a lot of work with adult youth-serving professionals. However we also run some amazing high-impact, engaging programs directly with youth, seeing the impact and change up close and personal that youth experience. We are proud of our youth leadership programs, which we feel are a model of a quality setting that offer dynamic opportunities for youth.

YOUTH LEADERSHIP CAMP PROGRAM: Served 300 youth, 20 youth ambassadors, 15 returning youth facilitators and 30 adult leaders. YDN provides a powerful strengths-based youth leadership experience through the Youth Leadership Program (YLP). The purpose of this project is to build the capacity of youth, community youth development leaders, organizations and other interested groups while engaging youth in meaningful ways where they will be seen as resources. YLP engages diverse participants (from ages 12-24) typically tagged “at-risk” by our culture. These youth are primarily low income, with a focus on racial and ethnic minorities, youth in foster care, pre-gang or


youth engaged by YLP

15 30

returning youth facilitators

adult leaders

2013 WayUp SYLP Strengths Camp Video



gang affiliated youth, adjudicated youth, and others exhibiting risky behaviors such as truancy, academic failure, drug use, homelessness, and poor social skills. Through proven, asset-based youth development programming, the youth who participate begin to see themselves not as “at-risk” youth, but more as youth who are “at-promise.” This shift in thinking means they are filled with hope for their future, are engaged in academic and mentorship opportunities provided for them and are less likely to participate in behaviors and situations that will negatively affect their well-being. For the first 9 years, this collaboration was known as the Sacramento Youth Leadership Program (SYLP), where 35-50 youth were engaged each year in a 4-day/3-night camp hosted at Grizzly Camp in Portola, California. In 2012, YDN was able to expand the program to include multiple camp experiences for community youth, as a result of a partnership with WayUp Sacramento and Sacramento City Unified School District (SCUSD). In 2013, the program again included two camps in partnership with WayUp Sacramento and SCUSD. The first camp in late July was a 3-day/1-night High School Freshmen Orientation Leadership Camp for approximately 350 youth from SCUSD, and took place on the California State University, Sacramento campus. The second camp, a Strengths-Based Youth Leadership Camp, included a 3-day/2-night camp for 75 of the youth who attended the orientation camp. This camp is focused on strengthening their leadership skills, building stronger relationships with their peers and adult mentors, and choosing an issue or cause to work on that will help make their school and community a safer, more supportive environment. Both camps are designed specifically to support current and future academic success by engaging young people in school and community change and the development of 21st century skills (soft skills): problem solving/critical thinking, oral and written communication, teamwork, diversity, leadership, creativity, flexibility, initiative and selfdirection, responsibility, productivity, and accountability. Through the camp activities, both structured and unstructured, these youth (from varied backgrounds, ethnicities, and life experience) develop strong positive relationships, while they learn to value their unique differences, strengths, and talents. Through facilitated activities, we aid these youth in learning valuable skills, as facilitators and participants.

School Site – Student Leadership Programs YDN served three regional school districts in 2013. YDN believes in the power of building emotionally safe, caring and consistent relationships for new students. This is why we design and facilitate leadership programs and orientations that build comfort for students at the beginning of the school year and help young people form connections with other students and staff. These programs are either facilitated by the YDN team, or YDN can help schools design and prepare their own staff and upperclassmen students to lead the orientation.


In 2013 YDN provided students, administrative staff and teachers of the Twin Rivers Unified School District, Encina High School (San Juan Unified School District), and Pioneer High School (Woodland Joint Unified School District) training and coaching to strengthen student leadership and peer support programs. Focus topics in 2013 included: Student Leadership, Using Strengths and Talents for Success, Peer Mentoring, Conflict Medication and 21st Century Skill Building. Student Leadership 21st Century Youth Skill Building Session: 6 sessions – 21 school sites – 100 students and adults participated in the program series. The overall goals of the Student Leadership program during the 2012-13 fiscal year included: improving the student leadership structures so that youth are more engaged in true positions of responsibility and decision-making; expanding youth and adults’ vision for student leadership at school to include a focus on school climate; and improving the student experience at their school by increasing the amount of authentic youth voice provided by student leaders. The series also helped provide adult advisors with the core skills to facilitate an authentic leadership process with their students.

“On the one hand I am watching the emergence of our youth facilitators really step into their leadership and have their voices elevated and on the other hand we have the opportunity to work with young people who have maybe never thought of themselves as leaders. Then getting to watch the interactions between the two of them has just been amazing.” Rangineh Azimzadeh Tosang

Camp facilitator



Peer Conflict Mediation and Peer Mentoring: 2 school sites – 108 students Participants learned practical skills to reduce and mediate conflicts within the classroom, school or program (active listening, paraphrasing, I-messages, triggers, etc.), as well as examined conflict mediation models. Peer conflict mediation programs have been held at PHS to include teachers and staff, youth leadership and advisory programs. Data from PHS demonstrates the positive impact that youth development supports can have. In 2012 Pioneer High completed Peer Conflict Mediation with 25 youth and have embarked on Peer Mentoring in 2013.

Youth Listening Circles

In 2013, three school districts engaged 100 youth and staff through listening circle forums. Listening circles are a means of creating effective dialogue forums for youth to share their experiences, thoughts and ideas around the topic of school climate. The primary facilitation method YDN uses is commonly known as “student fishbowls” or “listening circles.” The listening circle format optimizes the listening of key stakeholders as they pay close attention to the experiences, feelings and perspectives of a targeted group of students. YDN strives to create a sense of equality and positive direction by asking effective questions that capture the reality of the current school climate as well as the dominant ideas youth have to strengthen the school climates of tomorrow. Specific areas of focus include perspectives from traditionally under-engaged students and foster youth.


100 youth and staff were enaged through listening circle forums.

Training – Inspiring Leaders and Cultivating Learning YDN seeks to change the world by impacting the people, organizations, and systems that support youth. We strive for changes to programs that lead to a stronger focus on what youth need to grow, survive, and thrive.

Framework for Practice: 10 things you can do now!

The 5 supports and opportunities that are critical to youth development and will help them become successful healthy adults: 1. Safety: Access to emotionally, culturally and physically safe environments 2. Relationship Building: Caring and consistent healthy relationships between adults and peers 3. Youth Participation: Opportunities for meaningful participation (youth have voice and choice) 4. Community Involvement: Opportunities to contribute to and gain knowledge of the community 5. Skill Building: Opportunities to build applicable skills in engaging and challenging ways




I loved that you helped us to evaluate ourselves, our organizations and our world around us to develop means of being most impactful.

FYI Cultural Competency Series Participant

See more video testimonials

Training YDN directly reached 1,034 participants through various trainings in 2013. YDN believes that the people who work with youth must be equipped with a passion, a focus and effective tools and strategies that focus on what is best for youth. YDN’s dynamic and customized trainings cultivate a mindset for youth development within those who attend. These trainings light fires in the belly. They focus laser beams on quality. We challenge participants and support their work as they make it happen. We feel confident that participants will come away from YDN trainings with “a-hah!” moments, concrete tools, and a renewed sense of energy and purpose in their work with young people.



Cultural Competency Youth Impact Series A second priority focus in 2013, supported by the Foundation for Youth Investment, centered on the Cultural Competency Youth Impact Series including 40 staff members from 8 organizations. This project series was developed by YDN out of our continuing work with cultural competency, safe and supportive climates, and the convening of the G.O. (Get Outdoors) Network. This opportunity has helped participating organizations create tangible and lasting change within programs, policies, and procedures to improve engagement with traditionally hard-toreach “at-risk” youth.



The project included a series of comprehensive workshops, paired with coaching, for organizations who work with youth in the outdoors and strive to improve their ability to reach and engage young people of diverse backgrounds and/or low-income youth. The goal of this series of workshops showcased a process whereby agencies can design and “fast track� shifts in policies, procedures and programs to optimize the way they reach a more diverse population. Strengths-Based Development A key offering in 2013 included training and coaching around Strength Development including: Group Dynamics--Building a Well-Rounded Team; Leading with Your Strengths; and Strengths Development-Maximizing Youth Potential. 707 youth and adults from over 18 school sites and organizations participated in various direct service and community-based offerings throughout the year. these trainings are designed to provide participants with a knowledge and understanding of group dynamics and how individual talents impact and influence these dynamics. Participants discover their unique top 5 talent themes using an on-line, globally-recognized, research-based instrument and platform developed by Donald Clifton of Gallup. The learning community provides the knowledge of: the difference between groups and teams, strategies for dealing with team conflict and common situations, a basic understanding of individual talent themes, and how individual talents and strengths can be used to strengthen their organization. Participants also have the opportunity to: link their strengths to successes, see a connection between their individual themes and past and present behaviors, recognize and value the natural talents and strengths in others, develop awareness of how natural talents and strengths can be interpreted by others, and explore the four domains of amazing teams.

Consulting YDN provided various coaching and consulting events in 2013 for adult and youth participants. We want ideas and strategies to stick. This is why our staff provides coaching to help implement new content or strategies across communities, schools and organizations from line staff to management--making these new ideas a part of the policies and procedures that will sustain them. We pride ourselves on our ability to meet people and organizations where they are, and to customize coaching and consulting to meet the needs of their youth and organization.

Teacher at RCHS on completing the YDI 2013


Networking Events – Promoting Best Practices and Connecting Resources YDN knows that the more people learn about each other, the more they feel connected. These connections lead to increased collaboration and a tighter community that is more effective at supporting our youth. Convenings: YDN directly reached over 100 participants through various convenings, YDN facilitates convenings that bring people together to find areas of common language and approach, and ultimately help them find new ways to work together. YDN shapes community events that highlight key issues, promote collaboration around a topic, and incorporate basic networking opportunities.


participants through keynote and conference presentations in 2013.

Keynote presentations and Conferences: YDN directly reached over 980 participants through keynote and conference presentations in 2013. We want to inspire and motivate change that improves young peoples’ lives. For this reason, we provide inspirational presentations that crystallize ideas, build momentum among staff, and raise awareness. Our customizable keynote presentations will spark ideas, provoke thoughtful dialogue, and help staff feel emotionally connected to important concepts for improving the quality of youth experience.

YDN Facilitator Convening 2013 - Marshmallow Challenge

Infinite Loop Challenge SBI Alumni Gathering



Fundraising Ettore’s Coffee Break, 2013 On February 27th, 340 members of the Sacramento Community came together to attend the Annual Ettore’s Coffee Break Fundraiser. To date, sponsorships and contributions through this event have raised $200,000 supporting Youth Development Network’s vision of creating communities filled with youth who know how to achieve personal and academic success; who know how to connect to adults and to their community; who have a positive vision of their future; and who grow up to be healthy, productive and civic-minded adults and leaders. Folks mingled, munched and enjoyed the unique opportunity to network with local celebrities, community leaders and change-makers while enjoying Ettore’s delectable baked goods. This year we also had the opportunity to honor Jay Schenirer & Bina Lefkovitz who have dedicated their lives to improving and increasing quality experiences for youth within Sacramento and throughout California. This event was successful and fun due to the many individuals, partners and businesses that combined their efforts to support it. Thank you.

Pups In The Park, 2013 On Saturday, June 22nd, YDN partnered with Happy Tails for the 5th annual “Pups In The Park” Dog Walk and Costume Content Fundraiser at McKinley Park in East Sacramento. Over 290 attendees enjoyed the park setting while visiting over 20 different local vendor booths and watched demonstrations by Uncle Mattie. Additional highlights of the day included the wide variety of pups in costumes competing for top prizes and raffle prize winners claiming the generously donated top dog gifts! All around a doggone great day!


Finance Graphs & Charts YDN Revenue Sources 2013

Program Fees............................ $350,595 Grants.........................................$84,502 Event...........................................$35,497 Contributions................................$23,912 Other............................................... $406 Interest.............................................. $103




Finance Graphs & Charts YDN Expense Allocation by Key Category 2013

Program Services....................... $399,573 Mgmt & General...........................$52,926 Fiscal Mgmt....................................... $406 Fundraising..................................$23,871


Finance Graphs & Charts YDN Expense Allocation by Project 2013




THANK YOU TO OUR FUNDERS FOR HELPING YDN Lead the way in Strengths-Based Outreach & Training 2013 Direct Impact Trainings

1,034 people impacted

Keynotes & Conferences

Listening Circles

980 Participants & Community Partners

100 youth & adult participants

Networking Events

630 Network Partners & Supporters

Indirect Impact: Immeasurable


27,440 Imagine 2,744 youth champions each touching the lives of just 10 youth. That equals 27,440 “at promise� youth who will gain access to a different pathway into their future. 20


313 Students    Attended  CSUS  Camp  

Participants learn   new  goal  setting   strategies  

Participants report   learning  new  forms   of  teamwork  

90% leave  enthusiastic   about  starting  school    

85 Students  (of  313)     Attend  a  3-­‐day,  2-­‐night  advanced  camp  

100% leave  with  a   desire  to  make  their   school  a  better  place  


40 Participants   (8  organizations)  


4 Workshops  


91% of  participants   adopt  culturally   competent  practices  into   their  organizations   2013 ANNUAL REPORT


MAILING ADDRESS 3222 Winona Way, North Highlands, CA 95660 OFFICE LOCATION 5115 Dudley Blvd., McClellan, CA 95652 PHONE: 916.566.1652 / FAX: 916.566.1653


Profile for Youth Development Network

YDN 2013 Annual Report  

2013 annual report for the Youth Development Network

YDN 2013 Annual Report  

2013 annual report for the Youth Development Network

Profile for vickiydn