Youth-Led Environmental Leadership

YMCA Earth Service Corps (YESC) is an innovative youth-led program that empowers students to take a hands-on role in creating a healthier environment in their schools, communities, and region while nurturing a respect for diversity within the natural world. 

Ways to Engage

Community Meeting | March 10, 4:15 - 5:15 pm
Are you wondering what types of projects your club can tackle virtually? Is your club working on a project to help your community and school? Do you want to learn more about what other green teams are working on, like increasing the tree canopy at their school by planting 300 trees? Join us to share your ideas and get inspired by other green teams! Issaquah HS and Sammamish HS green teams are hosting our next discussion. Don't miss out!
Sign up >

Earth Day Film & Photo Festival | Submissions due April 16
YESC is hosting its annual Film & Photo Festival! We are currently collecting submissions of photos and videos from youth in the Puget Sound area. The guiding theme of this year’s festival is “Celebrating the Earth.” Videos will fall into three categories based on running time: under 10 seconds, under 60 seconds, and under 3 minutes. Photos can be submitted to one of six categories.

  • Micro: image of something small taken up close (like a close up of an insect)
  • City: nature in an urban/suburban context
  • Spring: anything you connect to Spring (blooming flowers, birds migrating, snow melting)
  • H2O: image featuring water of some sort
  • Wonder: an image you feel inspires awe, is beautiful or unexpected, or however you define “wonder”
  • Open: our miscellaneous section if you feel your image does not quite fit in any of the categories listed above.

All submissions are due by Friday, April 16. A virtual event on April 27 will highlight the videos and photos submitted, announce the winners of different film and photo categories, and reveal the prizes! We can’t wait to see your submissions in celebration of the Earth. Submit a video or photo > 

Environmental Symposium | April 21, 1:00 - 4:30pm
The Environmental Symposium is an opportunity for youth in grades 8-12 to engage in a series of interactive, skills-based workshops with environmental professionals from around the Puget Sound. Workshop topics include environmental justice, water quality, waste reduction, and more! Youth will network with passionate peers and adults as well as gain tools to address local environmental issues and create real, positive change for their communities.
Register by April 18 > 


iNaturalist | Ongoing
Are you interested in learning more about wildlife in Seattle? Do you enjoy being outside? Do you watch Planet Earth and wish you could see amazing nature in real life? iNaturalist is a mobile and web-based app where users from all over the world upload cool pictures of wildlife they see all around them. YESC started a year-long project to see how many species we can document all over Seattle and Washington.
Join the YESC Greater Seattle BioBlitz > 



Teen Expeditions

Our outdoor leadership trips will take teens to some of the most beautiful and natural places in the Pacific Northwest while inspiring them to be their most courageous and confident selves.

Youth & Government

Nurturing innovation, fostering a sense of responsibility and building leadership skills, we ensure our future leaders will be active and engaged servant leaders.

Global Programs

Teen Global Programs are designed to develop international understanding, leadership skills, and cultural competency as well as provide service learning opportunities for teens ages 14-17.