For more than 70 years, the Youth of the Year program has honored and celebrated the nation’s most inspiring teens and their incredible journeys. Stories of outstanding leadership, service, academic excellence and dedication to living a healthy lifestyle have made Youth of the Year America’s premier leadership and recognition program for teens. These amazing young people represent the voice and spirit of hope for America. Inspiring all kids to lead. To succeed. To inspire.
The St. Helena and Calistoga Teen Centers select a Youth of the Month for the entire calendar year based on their volunteer work, academic performance, character, and Club program participation. At the end of the year, staff select which Youth of the Month best represents all of these criteria and selects two teens from Calistoga and two from St. Helena to represent the organization as our four Youth of the Year nominees. These outstanding teenage students exemplify what our organization stands for, and who exhibit leadership, service to others, and academic excellence. With the help of five prominent citizens these teens are judged on their merits in hopes of achieving Youth of the Year status to then go onto local, state and regional Youth of the Year events.
This year we recognize nominees, as pictured left to right, Axel Avina, Zantos Segura, Alexa Clavel, and Anahiz Martinez—one of whom will be named our Youth of the Year!
Axel Avina - Axel is a Sophomore at Calistoga High, and has been attending the Boys & Girls Clubs since he was in Kindergarten. He was nominated as a Youth of the Year in large part due to the positivity he brings to the program, as well as his engaging and infectious personality. Axel credits the Club in helping him navigate family struggles during the Glass Fire, where his mother was suddenly out of work. He watched her struggle emotionally as she tried to continue to provide for the family. “…The Club will always go above and beyond to make me feel like I always have someone whose got my back.” Axel is passionate about art and engaging with people, and plans to continue his education in a way that will encompass both.
Zantos Segura - A 16-year-old Junior at St. Helena High School, Zantos can be found on almost any given day helping and volunteering with the Club. His passion for helping others has been an avenue that helped to shape his identity. Zantos has been coming to the Club since 1st grade, and watched the BGCSCH staff always striving to help those around them, and became motivated to do the same. During the onset of the pandemic, Zantos volunteered as often as he could with the Club’s ‘Feed our Families’ program, where he helped pass out meals to families in need. As Zantos put it, “Being a part of that has taught me to be selfless, to be caring, and that small actions can make a big difference.” It is the countless small and selfless actions that Zantos has contributed to our Clubs that led to his nomination as Youth of the Year.
Alexa Clavel - Alexa first began attending the Club in 5thgrade, where she came to receive help with her academics. She is a Junior year at Calistoga High. Alexa is often the last to leave each night, working on her studies. Currently a Rotary Club member, she has a passion for giving back to her community. She finds solace knowing the Club is always there to assist with her schoolwork, but also has found peace there as she navigated a member of her immediate family battle alcoholism. In her words, “The Teen Center has been a significant and valuable support system, it has become a place where I can put my guard down, and truly express myself as a person.” Alexa hopes to study at Stanford after high school.
Anahiz Martinez - Anahiz is a lifelong Club member. She has always credited the Club as being her home away from home. A Junior at St. Helena High, Anahiz has gained a reputation at the Club as always being there to help. Whether it be talking to a peer, helping younger kids with an activity, or cleaning up, she is a valued Club member and volunteer. Not only is she selfless and helpful, but she is a driven student who participates in a number of extracurricular activities, including softball and being a member of the CLARA program. Anahiz is hoping to study medicine at UC Berkeley, and seeing the trajectory her young life has taken, it would be no surprise to see her accomplish all of her goals.
We will celebrate our Youth as well as our Members of the Year from the Howell Mountain, Calistoga and St. Helena Clubhouses on May 12, 2022.
Help us to continue to support and develop the youth in our communities and make the biggest impact possible. All monies raised make a positive impact and go directly to our local Clubs.