Youth Are Awesome!

The Cause

Youth in Calgary need a safe place to share ideas, voice opinions and be creative. A place online where thousands of other young people can learn from their ideas and realize the opinions of young people matter. Youth Are Awesome ( fills this need for local safe online content for youth by youth.

Youth Are Awesome (YAA), a program of Youth Central, is a community-based website maintained by youth volunteers (ages 12-18). Youth are the decision makers; they are at the forefront of design, implementation of ideas and maintenance of the website. Youth write all content, covering everything from film, sports, fashion, food, issues of importance to youth, local and global events, and many other topics. It is updated daily using text, video, images, and the latest in media. A Youth Central staff member is there to help bring ideas to fruition and support the YAA volunteers. The website fills a need for online appropriate youth driven content and fosters a creative and open environment for youth to express themselves and highlight the amazing things youth are doing. Currently there are 45 youth bloggers contributing content. Older and more experienced YAA youth volunteers take on additional responsibilities as senior editors to the younger YAA volunteers. It’s an opportunity for the youth to learn firsthand, as many of the youth are aspiring writers and journalists.

Who Will it Benefit?

Youth primarily throughout the province of Alberta. The youth volunteers, 45 currently, who provide the content for the website gain skills in the areas of communications, decision making, graphic design, leadership, team work, and time management. They gain self-confidence and realize that their voice matters. That their opinions are important and people want to hear their thoughts.

The outcomes:
- YAA volunteers gain knowledge and skills related to blogging and social media
- YAA volunteers learn how to express themselves and use their voice
- YAA volunteers learn teamwork and leadership skills
- YAA volunteers learn how to work independently
- YAA volunteers meet deadlines and learn how to follow through on commitments
- YAA volunteers learn researching skills
- YAA volunteers learn how to interview others
- YAA volunteers gain knowledge of the Calgary community and the philanthropic acts of other young people
- YAA volunteers feel they make a difference in the Calgary community
- YAA volunteers recognize the benefits of volunteering

The readers of the website (15,945 unique page views and 36,221 total page views in April 2015) learn what other youth are thinking. We hope the readers are inspired to express their opinions in their communities.