Children

The Intersection

By Todd Hansen, Director of Programs and Experiences

Dear Reader,

Our school retreats are the heart of what we do at Youth Frontiers (YF), but for those who haven’t experienced one, they can be challenging to conceptualize. Individuals new to YF often draw from what they know: “So, it’s like a school assembly?” “A lecture?” “A concert?” “Camp?” While our retreats contain some similar elements, identifying an experience that closely depicts what we do – other than “a retreat” – has been tricky. Recently, I rediscovered one of my writings, and I realized that a fitting parallel to our retreats is, of all things, an intersection:
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Youth Frontiers Goes to Camp

By Sarah Barchus, Youth Frontiers Communications Specialist

We are all about building community at Youth Frontiers, and sometimes we take that part of our mission very literally. Last Monday, our staff traveled to Camp Tanadoona, where we spent the afternoon building a challenge course, renovating the facilities and packing healthy snacks for the next wave of hungry campers.READ MORE

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Doing Good Together

Doing Good Together: 50 Family Acts of Kindness

By Sarah Aadland, Doing Good Together

If you’re awake and near a screen, it’s likely you’re feeling a sense of urgency. The endless connectivity of our devices can’t help but give us an endless feeling of lagging behind. Whether your anxiety is generated by an overflowing workload, bulging schedule or the ongoing parade of alarming headlines, now is a great time to take a breath. Find your inner quiet, and focus on family acts of compassion right in your own community.READ MORE

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Youth Frontiers Retreat Musician performs on a Respect Retreat

Aña’s Story

By Debra G, Youth Frontiers Retreat Musician

I first met Aña* at a Courage Retreat for Fridley Middle School’s eighth graders around 13 years ago. It was the school’s first Courage Retreat, and the space we held it in was dark and almost too small for the number of students who participated that day.

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Raedean_Greater Expectations

Greater expectations

By Raedean Foote, Youth Frontiers School Relations Representative

“If a child grows up never seeing themselves represented [in the media] as successful or as the hero, then they are the anomaly if they succeed and the expectation if they fail.” – Yara Shahidi

By this standard, society definitely expected that I would fail. To start, I was born to an unwed white mother and a black father, and in the early 80s, being racially mixed didn’t feel “normal.” Aside from my brother, it’s hard to recall other multiracial children in my neighborhood, classroom or even at the grocery store – forget about seeing someone on TV who had the same shade of skin as I did. I grew up in a single-parent household, in subsidized housing, and in the free-and-reduced lunch program. As a kid with my background, it was hard to identify with those society portrayed as successful.
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Planning A Family Vacation Can Build Money Skills

By Nathan Dungan, Youth Frontiers Board Co-Chair

Have you ever thought about using a family vacation as a way to help build important financial skills?

There is great value in coming together as a family to plan, budget, research and save for a vacation. It’s a process that gives everyone a clear view of the possibilities and parameters, and it’s your best opportunity to get everyone engaged in the experience.READ MORE

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The Unexpected Light

By Erica Cantoni, Manager of Corporate and Major Gift Engagement

On a recent sunny Sunday, I followed my 16-month-old daughter, Junie, as she slowly but rather fearlessly climbed up dozens of wooden steps and platforms to the top of our local playground. As she stood contemplating the view and her next move, an older boy scrambled up, looked her over and declared, “This is only for big kids.” Restraining the roar of my inner Mama Bear, I responded, “Well, that’s not true, actually. She’s strong and brave and she belongs up here too.”READ MORE

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student raising hand

Want to improve education? Focus on Impact.

By Steve Dornbach, Director of Programs – Teacher Frontiers

When students ask me, “Mr. Dornbach, why did you go into teaching?” My response is always quick and always the same, “Court ordered.” I go on to say, “I made some bad decisions in my life and the judge gave me a choice: ‘Teach kids or do some hard time.’ So I chose to teach.” READ MORE

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