Since 1947, Youth of the Year has been Boys & Girls Clubs of America’s premier recognition program, celebrating the extraordinary achievements of Club members. Each year, one exceptional young person from a Boys & Girls Club rises to the role of Youth of the Year. The Youth of the Year serves as both an exemplary ambassador for Boys & Girls Club youth and as a strong voice for all of our nation’s young people. Vanessa has been a member of the Boys & Girls Clubs for four years, and just graduated with the Madison East Class of 2021. Vanessa has showcased her leadership skills through her participation in various Club programs (DCE, YLSC, YOY) and in her school activities. Vanessa hopes to become a Child Psychologist and is studying Psychology at UW- Madison.

“Throughout my journey with the Boys and Girls Club I have developed skills and supportive relationships with my peers, mentors, and staff. I believe the mission of this Club aligns with my values and I’m glad I have the opportunity to be a part of this community. Becoming an advocate is easier than it sounds because anyone can make a difference and it’s never too late to start.”

Vanessa Bahena Hernandez BGCDC Youth of the Year 2021 Madison East High School UW-Madison Class of 2025


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