School’s Out & The Numbers Are In

Summer’s here, school’s out and the reports are in. Youth Odyssey had another very successful school year with Corpus Christi Independent School District (CCISD). This year we had programs at Baker, Cunningham, Haas, Hamlin, Martin, and South Park middle schools. Not only did our youth prove that they had gained new skills this year, we all had a lot of fun along the way.

Our youth’s biggest improvement was in self-confidence. From all the kids we see, 86% of them said that they gained more self-confidence by participating in our program! This outcome makes us so thrilled because after youth gain self-confidence, it makes it so much easier for them to pick up the other life skills we teach! Confidence bleeds into every other aspect of life and Youth Odyssey believes that it is a highly important characteristic to have and to instill in our youth.

“I like Youth Odyssey because through games and fun exercises, I learn teamwork, trust, leadership, and other important life skills. And in addition to learning about the skills, we go to the ropes course and on camping trips so we have a chance to use and practice these skills in a real-world setting.”15 year old girl

Teamwork skills and trust came tied in second at 85% improvement. Teamwork and trust go hand in hand. To have great teamwork, you must also have a good amount of trust in your teammates. In order to build trust, you must show an effort to work together. When we take our youth to the ropes course, this is the perfect setting for them to polish their collaboration skills and build trust amongst each other. At the ropes course, they fail and succeed together and watch each other struggle and overcome. This type of bonding creates a special level of intimacy and trust among participants. As program facilitators, it’s an amazing thing to watch and experience with them!

Problem solving, communication and leadership skills all showed improvements above 80%, which is fantastic and well above our goal of 75%. When kids can learn these skills and use them in tandem they can be more successful in school and resilient in all aspects of life.

Youth Odyssey has been partnered with CCISD since 2002. We have always seen positive outcomes from our programs at the schools. So much so, that in 2010 when CCISD had to make program budget cuts, we were the only after school program they kept. CCISD reports show that kids who participate in our programs have lower drop out rates and disciplinary problems, and increased grades, attendance and standardized test scores! It’s clear that Youth Odyssey programs make an impact in our community. While summer is great, we are ready for fall so we can go back to school and continue to make a difference!

Thank you for helping us make a HUGE impact this past school year! To find out how you can help us make an even BIGGER impact, please call 361-946-6016 and tell us “I want to help make a bigger difference!”Becky Meyer, Executive Director