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2014 Top-Rated Nonprofit

EDGE Youth Leadership (formerly NCYLS)

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Children & Youth, Education, Secondary & High Schools, Youth Development, Youth Development - Citizenship

Mission: Our mission is to seek out outstanding young leaders and help them develop their leadership potential, as well as encouraging them to volunteer to make an impact on their community.

Results: EDGE Youth Leadership serves an average of 150 students a year. Through a survey conducted at the start and end of the seminar, students demonstrate a 20% average increase in confidence in public speaking, ability to make a difference through volunteering, interest in service, and confidence in their own leadership skills. Participants have also demonstrated that EDGE has a lasting impact on their desire to volunteer. In a long-term survey, students indicated that EDGE was the second highest influence of their motivation to volunteer.

Target demographics: All high school sophomores, regardless of gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation or socioeconomic status. Because we are a free seminar, in a time of budget cuts, schools can turn to us for excellent leadership development without worrying about cost.

Direct beneficiaries per year: 160 students

Geographic areas served: California

Programs: an annual leadership seminar each spring or summer that kicks off a yearlong mentoring program (Day Four) to help students discover what they are passionate about, create an action plan and effect positive change in their schools and communities.

Community Stories

77 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Kendra S.1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I attended Edge (back then it was NCYLS) in 2011, and returned the following year as part of the J-Crew. When I first pulled up to the conference, I had no idea what to expect. Like most 15-year-olds, I thought I knew everything there was to know, and I presumed this would be like any old conference. Boy was I wrong. Edge is a special production, and magically captures and empowers leaders at all different points in their development. Both the shy teenagers that need a little prompting to break out of their shells and the vocal leaders in their classes have a lot to gain from this experience. It was an easy decision to return as a volunteer. This is an organization that thoroughly invests in its volunteers, management, and participants at all levels. There are boundless opportunities for growth and acceptance in this organization, and it was certainly one of the most impactful experiences I had in my teen years.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I can easily say that EDGE Youth Leadership has changed my life. When I was in high school I never really thought of myself as a leader, and I didn't have a place to call home. After my weekend at EDGE I was literally a new person. I had realized that I actually was a leader and in that short amount of time, I grew so much mentally and emotionally. Ever since then, I have been a part of EDGE for 3 years now and I am so thankful and lucky that I have a place where I can call home. EDGE has been my home for the past few years now and it has also given me some of the greatest friends I know. My life wouldn't be so rich in love and friendship if I didn't get to attend EDGE my sophomore year.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Edge gave my daughter life long friends and relationships. Through her involvement and volunteering she has also gained real life skills. Edge helped my son leave his comfort zone and open his eyes to new ways to be a leader. He also plans on continuing to help other leave their comfort
Zones while making life long friends and real life skills. Edge helps bring develop unknown confidences.

John M.2

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

EDGE changed my daughter's life in a positive way. She has been involved for 5 years now and I know that she'll be a EDGE lifer! The friends she's made are family now.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I attended EDGE in 2014 and it changed my life. I spoke in front of the entirety of the seminar about my experience with hearing loss and EDGE gave me the confidence to impact others with my story. I have remained involved with EDGE because it is an incredibly special organization where everyone is accepted and loved.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

This seminar is life changing and inspiring to sophomores. I attended EDGE in 2015 and volunteered as a Jcrew the next year and now I am an SCrew. I love this seminar and I think it is an amazing program!

Logan A.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

EDGE Youth Leadership was my catalyst, constructing worth within me and inspiring me to improve the world. The idea that I can truly do anything I set my mind to was installed into me here, a place of education, motivation, and action. This is a place where creativity and compassion grow, where love and leadership thrive. The atmosphere is welcoming as well as electric, urging you to take off your cool jacket and dance! There is no judgement but encouragement. Each individual had come from a different background but in the end left with the same profound belief: Be. Believe. Become.

Board Member

Rating: 5

In early 2016 I joined the EDGE Board because of my background in fundraising and my belief in the organization's mission. Since I have been involved, I have learned even more about EDGE and to say that I have been "so impressed" would be an understatement. EDGE not only changes the lives of the students that attend the seminar, it also changes the lives of the volunteers. I am proud to say that I am a part of an OUTSTANDING organization!

Danae G.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

EDGE is a great organization. I attended the conference in 2013 and since then I have been hooked. I volunteer with them year round, planning the conference. EDGE has taught me a lot about understanding, communication, and networking. I use these skills to be a leader in my community and to help empower others to do the same. EDGE has built such a strong loving community of leaders who are compassionate and driven.

Client Served

Rating: 5

EDGE Youth Leadership has truly changed my life. I walked into this seminar weekend with high expectations because of alumni and I must tell you, my expectations were exceeded to max and plus some. There was nothing, but love throughout the entire weekend. This have me hope with my goals because of other people who were able to exceed their goals at around my age. This brought me enthusiasm in everything I do because the staff was so passionate in making sure that us, students, were in a comfortable and happy environment. This just showed me so much about being a leader and how to make things fun for those around me, just by living my life. I can't thank this program enough for everything they've done for me in 3 days and I really hope I can come back as JCrew

1 Nicole108

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I was a participant at EDGE my sophomore year and I absolutely fell in love with the program and everything that it stands for. I couldn't help but come back every year after to continue to be apart of this life changing experience. I am currently going into my 3rd year as a volunteer.

3

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been volunteering with EDGE ever since I attending the seminar as a sophomore in high school in 2011, and am consistently blown away by the incredible impact the program makes on each student who has the opportunity to attend. I am so lucky to be a part of such an incredible seminar as a member of the planning committee and have learned so much from the inspirational individuals who put on, attend and speak at the program.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I volunteer my time at EDGE Youth Leadership as the Media Director. I really love this organization so much. EDGE makes such a huge positive impact in the lives of the HS Sophomores who attend. I see their transformation as they gain in confidence and leadership skills over the weekend, it is truly amazing!

Previous Stories
1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am the media director of EDGE, and have been since 2006. EDGE is such an amazing organization, all of the students who go through the seminar are so inspired to achieve so much more with their lives. They leave the weekend really inspired to try to make a difference in the world. And the students make life long friends and have one of the best times of their lives.

1 Linda314

Volunteer

Rating: 5

My experience with EDGE was an inspiring experience! I was impressed with their intention, their message, the organization and the participants. This was an experience that I wished was available to me when I was in high school. (As is available to high schoolers now.).

Abby20

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I attended EDGE as high school sophomore in 2012 and have been returning every year since as a member of the planning committee. EDGE Youth Leadership is a life-changing seminar that allows emerging leaders to experience three days of fun and educational learning, and personally it changed the way I viewed almost everything. The best part about EDGE is that as a student or volunteer you get to meet roughly 160 new people every year, and these people come from so many different backgrounds that it's so intriguing to just sit down and have a conversation with someone new anytime during the weekend. I am now a freshman in high school, and it turns out that my [random] roommate also attended EDGE the year that I did. We are now best friends and have that initial bond that was sparked by EDGE.

Samantha41

Volunteer

Rating: 5

My EDGE experience was by far the best experience I could have ever had! I still remember the moment when I drove up to the camp wondering what I had gotten myself into! People were screaming left and right and dancing around. Like who does that right?! But then I met my group and the other amazing people that were going through the experience with me. By the end of the camp I felt like I new everyone and my leadership skills had grown so much. I loved the new perspective I had on the world. After EDGE I felt so empowered to make all my dreams come true! I will never forget that experience that I had and the amazing friendships I made. Without EDGE I wouldn't be the person that I am today. I love EDGE and all the people in it. They're OUTSTANDING!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

My journey with EDGE began as a student. Since then, I have served various roles and have continued to support this organization because I believe in the great work we do. Along the way, I have met so many amazing people who have become my second family. What makes this organization so special is the inspirational energy that resonates far beyond the seminar weekend.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I attended EDGE just this past year and the program greatly influenced my leadership and my perspective on life. EDGE emphasizes the importance of putting others before yourself and using your life to help create a positive change. I can honestly say that since my 3 days spent at EDGE as a student my attitude is much more positive and optimistic, I make a point to lift others up, and I am constantly searching for new ways to give back to my school and community. EDGE is a great program for all students as it strengthens leadership skills, builds confidence, and provides students with the encouragement they need to initiate the change they want to see. I will be attending EDGE this upcoming year to serve as a Junior Counselor, as I hope to provide this year's sophomores with the same remarkable experience I was given, as well as give back to the organization which has had such a positive impact on my life.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have volunteered at NCYLS for 2 years now and it has truly been a humbling and OUTSTANDING experience. It is like a filtered meeting arrangement for one of the best people you could ever meet. The staff and attendees are amazing! You could see, feel, and feed off of their energy the whole day. It is crazy how much energy there can be within one day. You get to witness again and again, as I always do, the power of positive and enthusiastic attitude. You also get to see how powerful it is to believe in someone. The power of one is a difference to the world. You get to understand what this sentence means when you come to NCYLS. It is truly an amazing experience you will not be able to see in a normal day.

Previous Stories

Volunteer

Rating: 5

This is one of the most eye opening experience that a volunteer can ever go to. You are motivated, inspired, and spirited. There is no other environment like that NCYLS creates, it is truly something you cannot get anywhere you go and one of the things that makes NCYLS so special. Leaders are not made here but they are made ready here with the inspiration, motivation, and confidence that they need to aspire anything they dream to. Nothings seems impossible after that one awesome weekend at NCYLS.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I attended NCYLS (now EDGE) last year. After attending this seminar, I decided to get a lot more involved in my community and school. Although I already had leadership skills, this seminar helped me improve and build on those! I loved this seminar so much, that I am now going back as a mentor. I would like to help the students feel comfortable just as I needed help doing. I know that it is difficult to step out of your comfort zone, but this seminar really helps students feel comfortable and expand on their skills and develop new ones.