The Power of a Word

Submitted by: Page Mill YMCA

Kevin's Success Story

Kevin is a 14-year-old boy who had no experience with the Y, but when his school suggested that he’d greatly benefit from the “Youth Institute Plugged In 2011” program, he begrudgingly agreed. Kevin showed up each day but avoided participating and interacting. Slowly over time though, Kevin began to take part in a few group exercises. The staff noticed that Kevin seemed surprised that the group listened to his ideas, and was excited when one of his suggestions was implemented. With the encouragement and support of his counselors, Kevin developed confidence and character and begin to believe in his potential impact in the world. In one activity where the group was being filmed, Kevin was seen smiling, laughing and enjoying himself. On the last day of the program, a staff member recalls, “I walked by Kevin and as we passed he said, ‘hi’. I took a step, then froze. I realized that Kevin had initiated an interaction.”
It’s rewarding when progress is measured in big numbers. But sometimes, it’s as small as a two-letter word that brings the biggest accomplishment.

“With the encouragement and support of his counselors, Kevin
developed confidence and character and begin to believe in his potential impact in the world.”