Verde Valley Sanctuary’s YES Program

Studies suggest that 15.5 million children in the U.S. witness domestic violence annually. By age 17, over one-third of America’s children will have been exposed to domestic violence. Witnessing violence can have a lasting impact on a child, and can result in fractured relationships, poor academic success, and even health problems that can last long into adulthood.

Our YES program equips young people with the skills to resist violence and abuse and empowers students to make positive choices. We believe in starting early and investing in prevention and intervention strategies that promote healthy parent-child relationships, friendships, and dating relationships.

Staff provides classroom training in nine (9) schools in Cottonwood, Camp Verde, and Rimrock. On average, each classroom is provided with five courses per school year. The students are eager to learn and are invested in the presentations and conversations. Presenters encourage youth input; it is genuinely a participative experience.

The YES program curriculum includes: empowerment, self-awareness, bullying, peer pressure, stress and relaxation, gratitude, body image, empathy and compassion, healthy and unhealthy relationships, and mental health. Each class begins with fun icebreakers and ends with an engaging activity.

As a counselor in a K-8 school, I see the need for social emotional learning and education in our public schools. The educators from this program provide innovative and engaging lessons for all students. Staff often witnessed our students really using their skills after the lessons they received and many of them shared their knowledge with their families. I highly recommend this program for all youth, especially now with the growing population of youth and teens with mental health and social issues.” Barb Daher, Mountain View Preparatory, Cottonwood

Leave a Comment