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As we close out our 7th year of Boys YIP Hawaii, we can absolutely say that we had another winning season. Our 140 boys got the chance to dream big every day, starting at draft night where they learned which teams they were on and committed to this program, with our largest turn out of family and community support ever!

The support and excitement didn’t end at draft night. On Day 1 of camp, the boys were met with a vigorous STEM based academic curriculum, as well as football driven vocabulary and reading to keep the students engaged around football from helmet composition, to throw trajectory, all the way to how the professionals speak about the sport- teaching the children not just how to be athletes, but student athletes.

Head Coach Timmy Chang and Coaches Ryan Lusk & Jack Ray led the charge in the afternoon, reinforcing the YIP Ethos of Loyalty, Duty, Respect, Selfless Service, Honor, Integrity, and Personal Courage through examples with their student athletes. UH Football coaches and team applied these values out on the field, and reinforced during their video review sessions, teaching the boys not only what it takes to be a good athlete, but also a great team member and student. The amplification of their programming allowed the campers to see what it really takes to be an amazing student athlete and how all aspects of our program tie into success.

There to hold the day together, was the 94th AAMDC military mentors, led by Brigadier General Costello and Sargent Major Canady. This group of volunteers often started their days on the bus with the children, then mentored throughout the course of the day, and got back on the busses home. They also hosted a field trip to Fort DeRussy, highlighting physical fitness and the Hawaii Army Museum.

Our guest speakers this year included former student athletes, and Major Paul Kim, a Drone Pilot from PACAF. These speakers reinforced perseverance and discipline it took to make accomplishments in their crafts. They encouraged the children to dream big, work hard, and never give up.

The closing ceremonies on June 20th at the Clarence T.C. Ching Athletics Complex gave our students the opportunity to showcase their accomplishments of the two weeks. Their teams started off with some scrimmages before turning the ceremonies over. From there the boys demonstrated their Haka, led by Darrien Mitchell and then handed over Hawaii Director Ziggy Ramil, Mayor Blangiardi, YIP Founder Riki Elison, Assistant Coach Chris Brown, and Brigadier General Costello to highlight the growth of these young men. Our military mentors were able to close out the ceremony with recognition and presentation of the Dream Cards, which display not only big career goals, but also commitments to work hard in school, in life, and as part of a team. With another record turnout of families and friends, the young men walked out of the athletics complex proudly displaying the qualities and characteristics the program works so hard to instill.

Permanently Impacting Our Nation’s At-Risk, Inner-City Youth