This page is currently under construction.
Change does not roll in on the wheel of inevitability but comes through continuous struggle.– Martin Luther King, Jr.
Youth Enrichment Services (YES) was born over 50 years ago and grounded in the values of racial, social, and economic justice. Skiing/snowboarding has been YES’ most identifiable trademark since its inception in 1968 and is primarily identified as a white and elite sport. As role models for our youth, YES takes its position seriously in helping to create a more equitable and healthy community. Nothing short of a unified approach by all can move us forward. We need to facilitate the conversations and action steps about eradicating racism and ensuring our youth grow up in a society where they are valued, not by their race, gender, or ethnicity, but instead through their ability to live with dignity, freedom, and respect of others. It’s not too late for us to make this happen!
- Diversity, Equity & Inclusion at YES
- Racial Equity Plan
- Volunteer Equity Committee
- Diversity in the Outdoors Series
- YES’s Commitment to Equitable Hiring
- Our Community at a Glance & Representation at YES
- Acknowledgement of Indigenous Lands
- Additional Resources
Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion at YES
We believe that it is necessary to articulate and share what Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) mean to YES’ family and culture in order to achieve organizational goals. We are proud to share our definitions below.
Diversity: Developing a team of stakeholders/people from differing perspectives and backgrounds to drive mission-driven programming and increase cultural awareness.
Equity: Creating spaces and removing barriers so all people are treated fairly and have the same access to opportunities.
Inclusion: Enabling a welcoming, respectful, and safe environment that fosters belonging for all stakeholders/people and groups.
Racial Equity Plan
Diversity, equity, and inclusion are integral to the YES mission. We believe that all youth should have access to the outdoors regardless of race, ethnicity, or economic status. We are proud to share our Racial Equity Plan and the progress that YES has made both inside and outside the organization. We know this work is never finished and look forward to being on this journey together with you.
Volunteer Equity Committee
This board-supported, volunteer-led committee is focused on YES’ work around inclusion of diverse youth participants, staff, volunteers, and board members. The Volunteer Equity Committee is charged with creating action steps that promote a more equitable and inclusive organization. The committee meets monthly and accepts new members on a rolling basis. Email [email protected] for more information about joining.
Diversity in the Outdoors Series
Started in 2021, YES continues to grow a very special program for Boston youth called “Diversity in the Outdoors”. With generous financial support from the ALKU Foundation, this initiative provides Boston young people with uplifting, celebratory, and safe outdoor experiences. The goal of the series is to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion in outdoor activities through togetherness and enhanced representation of youth of color in New England’s outdoor recreation spaces. The program was developed in consultation with YES board member and parent, Rashaun Martin, who is an expert in the DEI field and Acting Manager Director of Retention, Cultivation, & Diversity Programs for Boston Public Schools.
YES’ Commitment to Equitable Hiring
YES understands that talent is distributed across all communities, but opportunity is not. We believe that it is our responsibility to create spaces and remove barriers to attract a diverse pool of candidates and employ a diverse workforce representative of the youth we serve. Open positions are posted in YES’ target neighborhoods, shared with BIPOC-serving organizations, and posted on a variety of websites.
Our Community at a Glance & Representation at YES
- 76% Youth of color, 43% Female
- 41% Staff of color, 50% Female, XX% LGBTQ+
- 35% Board member of color, 24% Female, 12% LGBTQ+
- 37% Volunteers of color, XX% Female, XX% LGBTQ+
Acknowledgement of Indigenous Lands
Youth Enrichment Services (YES) recognizes that our outdoor programs and activities occur on the lands of indigenous tribes. We aim to respect indigenous peoples as the traditional stewards of these lands.
As a youth development organization providing underserved youth access to the outdoors, YES is committed to educating our community about the history of the lands on which we reside and explore. We acknowledge the centuries of hardships indigenous peoples have faced, and therefore we stand in solidarity with native peoples in dismantling ongoing colonialist legacies.
If you are interested in learning about the lands on which YES operates its programs, we invite you to read more at www.yeskids.org/landacknowledgement
Research has shown that people of color are far less likely to engage in nature-based outdoor recreation activities. In addition to being three times more likely to live in places lacking immediate access than white people, they also face greater barriers including cost, transportation, safety, and the sense that certain outdoor activities and spaces aren’t “meant for them” as a result of systemic racism and historic discrimination. To learn more about the “Nature Gap” and strategies to dismantle it, visit: