Teen Service Opportunities: YMCA Leaders Club

Making community service simple, fun, and impactful.

Photo by Eliza Cody

Photo by Eliza Cody

As college application deadlines are getting closer and closer, many seniors are scrambling to get in some volunteer hours. High schoolers often push off participating in service to focus all their attention on academics, sports, and extracurriculars, so it’s easy for volunteer work to get lost in all of these other commitments.

Leaders Club is a teen development program at the YMCA that runs throughout the school year. This program offers real-world leadership training as well as volunteer opportunities that serve the Y and the community. The club meets at the Northwest Cary YMCA on Monday nights for an hour (which counts as an hour of community service), where they participate in leadership-based activities and have lots of fun. The club runs from September 12th to May 11th, with each club meeting lasting from 7:30 pm-8:30 pm and a total of 35 meetings per session. Leaders Club also includes service and social events, as well as trips throughout the year, including rallies, service work weekends, optional spring break trips, and Blue Ridge Leaders School.

The President of the Northwest Cary YMCA Leaders Club is GLHS senior Jessica Jordan. When asked what she thought made LC stand out among other service-based clubs, she said: “You make lots of lasting friendships and connect with people. I’ve met a lot of close friends through Leader’s Club, and while yes, you are learning and participating in service opportunities, you’re also meetings new people and making lifelong friends .” She says she’s most excited for Paint Wars, Blessing Bag Service Night, and the Seafarer service trip this year in club.

The NW Cary Y Teen Director and Head Advisor of Leaders Club: Eliza Cody, says the joy she gets out of running this club is contagious. When asked how she would describe LC to someone interested, she said, “Leaders club is a safe space for high school and middle schoolers to come and be themselves while having their leadership skills developed, serving our community, and having fun.” That’s why she made this year’s theme ‘Come as you are’ to emphasize the open-door nature of Club. Eliza is most excited about this year’s Boo Bash on October 28th!

The Northwest Cary YMCA Leaders Club provides many opportunities to serve in the community. Many events are coming up that the club plans to participate in, including:

Movie Night at Mills Park Elementary School (10/8)– Mills Park Elementary invited Highschool Leaders Club to put on a movie night for their students. Volunteers will help collect ticket money and run concession stands.

SAS 5K (10/15)– Club members can help at the SAS 5k to cheer on racers and direct them down the correct paths! This opportunity goes from 6:30 am to 9 am.

Trunk or Treat (10/29)-Come dressed up to the NW Cary YMCA to hand out candy to trick or treaters. Club members can bring and decorate their car for this event or decorate a club advisor’s car. Volunteers would need to come with decorations for cars and candy to help pass out. 

The club also has some fun social events planned for teens, including the Boo Bash on October 28th at Crosspointe Church, at 9 pm. Club members are invited, as well as any other teens who want to watch a scary movie, eat pizza, and stay warm by the bonfire.

To stay updated with High School Leaders Club, you can follow them on Instagram at @nwcary_hslc. All teens are always welcome to meetings to check out the club, and if you’re interested in becoming a member, you can register here.