What do YES participants have to say?

My YES trip experience was refreshing, enlightening, and most of all motivated. It reminded me about the important things in life and taught me so much about the inequalities in our society. It was a reality shock, but in the best way possible. Everything that we did on the trip was amazing, but the most important part of the trip for me was the feeling that I got afterwards--I felt more equipped to go out into the world and focus on the small differences I can make to help those that have less.
Katie
YES Student
YES has taught me that everyone is capable of growing their compassion and empathy. Even over the course of a weekend, not only has my perspective of poverty and other people changed, but as a leader I got to see this transformation and shift in others. YES has taught me that no matter what, everyone is worthy of love and compassion. It’s one thing to know all of this, but it’s another thing to realize and experience it for myself, which I was fortunate enough to do through YES.
Nicole
YES Student
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This conference showed the uniqueness of how to love. Love is not black and white. Love will move mountains and through your actions, you can inspire people to find their own way and find their own calling that is unique to them. Love and leadership should almost be synonyms of each other; limitless love and limitless leadership. This weekend proves that love can change the world.

Wadeed

LEADERSHIP TRAINING GRADUATE

“It is a really eye opening experience where I feel I was able to open my eyes to the problem of homelessness within the city that normally I don’t typically see. It really sparked a drive to work on serving others no matter the context and trying to live a true, Christian life at all times.”
Owen
YES Student
“YES has pushed me far beyond my comfort zones. Being a part of 3 trips has not only taught me about those around me, but I was also able to learn about myself and what I truly value.”
Christina
YES Student

The YES family day had significant impact on our parish in so many tangible ways. Serving shoulder to shoulder, parents and their children were guided through learning opportunities that changed not only how they related to each other, but also grew their understanding of the needs and realities of our brothers and sisters being served. Additionally, and perhaps most importantly, a relationship with local service providers was created that our parish has maintained. The Family Day ignited conversations and passion within our community and made us question how we, as a small church in California, can best respond to the call of the Gospel. That one day literally changed our missional DNA as a parish.

Michelle Moujaes

YES Parent

The pure love I received from the non judgmental supportive people at the YES trip made that weekend one of the most significant in my life. Not only did we travel miles around our city, but we traveled many miles mentally. We brought ourselves to a place filled with Christ's love when we all opened up to each other and took in the aspects of Christ in our city we had been ignoring all around us. When we shared that love publicly to anyone that would listen it truly became something special. The love we held spread to those we talked to, laughed with, and embraced and that alone became the most rewarding thing i have ever felt.
Nina
YES Student

“There is something beautiful about having built up a tradition of YES trips. They are already in their “YES Place” in their heart when they show up. I love to see that it’s really working, and this new generation is truly picking it up and taking it forward.”

Elissa Bjelitich

YES Parent, Youth Worker, and Advisory Board member speaking on the culture of service that has been created by hosting annual YES trips at her parish in Austin, TX.

"YES is a challenge. A challenge to look at the world with pure joy and curiosity. A place to get to know God, people you've never met, and people you thought you knew. One of the things I remember most was looking complete strangers in the face without second thoughts during, before, or after."
Raphael
YES Student
“YES guides us with a compassionate outlook on life, teaches us to break down stereotypes, and most importantly to love all of our neighbors, despite whatever situation they may be in. The way that I see things and people, and whatever their situation is, has been truly and forever changed from a closed-minded to an open-minded outlook on life, thanks to YES.”
Christina
YES Student
“I love YES because it allows you to understand there are people in need wherever you are--whether it's some big, tourist-filled city, or a quiet town off the coast. People need community and love. YES gives us the opportunity and awareness to fulfill that need.”
Tatiana
YES Student
“I love YES because it has opened my eyes to Christ in everyone. Strangers, friends and neighbors. It has filled my heart with a joy I didn't know I needed."
Cat
YES Student
“YES provided an amazing opportunity to show others that the all-too-common stereotype that homeless people are bad or disgusting or are always at fault for their situations is not true at all. Our mission allows us to break the barrier between 'homeless' and 'not homeless' and we get to all be just people together in fellowship. In a way, I feel like we provide just a brief moment of realization to people who may feel alone that they really aren't and that they are in fact loved.”
Josh
YES Student
I love YES because it opens your eyes to the amount of poverty in this country, and it helps you see the humanity of people who are homeless. And it shows you how you can serve those in need.”
Daniel
YES Student