Youth Enrichment Services

The Impact of YES: Ethan’s Story

In true YES spirit, 14-year-old Ethan wanted to get out of his comfort zone and try something new this summer.

Ethan Liu

Ethan skateboarding at Lynch Family Skatepark with YES’s Skateboarding for Good program.

He had actively engaged with YES’s Outdoor Adventure programs since he was 12 years old and loved learning how to rock climb, kayak, and mountain bike. Ethan developed a passion for the outdoors and was excited to experience new outdoor activities.

Having developed a taste for adventure, the Boston teen signed up for YES’s new Skateboarding for Good summer program. Skateboarding for Good gives urban youth the chance to experience a week of intensive skateboarding lessons with YES staff and skateboard instructors from partner organization, Skate Catalyst.

Ethan was unsure what to expect but excited to learn a new sport. “I challenged myself this week when I tried doing a hopscotch turn for the first time (a skateboarding trick). Afterwards, I felt really accomplished”, Ethan reflects, “I did something I didn’t think I could do.”

This summer, Ethan is excited to be a part the Outdoor Adventure program’s new Berkshire Explorers week-long session. Ethan will stay at Swann Lodge in the Berkshires, navigate the forest, learn how to use a compass and read a trail map, and take part in exciting outdoor challenges.

Reflecting on his time with YES, Ethan feels like a different person than he was on his very first day. After three summers of trying new outdoor activities, Ethan says, “Like I’ve learned in rock climbing, never give up on a cliff. I feel more confident from everything I’ve done with YES.”

Ethan will be entering the 9th grade at Boston Latin School this fall and looks forward to experiencing more outdoor adventures with YES this year.