Fort Worth YMCA Youth & Government from Sarah Schoolfield on Vimeo.
Azim Hussain said it best when asked to describe Youth & Government. “This program showed me who I can be. It’s defined who I am. I can lead. I can executive plans. And I am a service oriented person now due to Youth & Government,” he said.
Officially, Youth & Government is a nation-wide YMCA youth-led leadership club that gives students a hands-on experience modeled after our three branches of government, as well as a media element. But as Azim explains, it is really so much more. “The YMCA has given me so much and through this program has built my character so much. It has given me a passion to give back. What better way for me to give back than to the program that helped me so much?”
Now a TCU student, Azim is an alumni volunteer of the Youth & Government program and will be helping lead the 38 students from his alma mater, Trinity High School, when they join 200 high school students from Tarrant and Hood counties, as well as thousands from across the state, at the Texas State Conference in Austin, Texas from January 28-30.
There, students will participate in mock trials, write and vote on bills in the legislative branch, campaign for office and report on all of the issues. And along the way, students will be learning how to lead and persuade others, communicate with all types of individuals and develop confidence in their beliefs and abilities.
“Youth & Government creates leaders,” Azim said, “I know the value and importance of having leaders and the YMCA cultivates that.”
Azim sees it in the students he works with now. “I see so much potential in these kids, and this program is a way to divert them, to get them on the right track,” he said, adding, “I’m securing theirs and my future. If we want to be successful, we have to build a successful community.” And that’s what he sees as the real value of the Youth & Government program: a building block for strong future communities.
Click here to see more pictures from the Youth & Government District Conference held at TCU.