A Revolutionary Youth Development Program

The true meaning of Andover Youth Services has always been finding new and exciting ways to engage ALL kids—from young artists, outdoorsmen and entrepreneurs to athletes, artisans and activists.  Their approach has spawned thousands of devoted followers--young people who have moved all over the world but continue to stay connected to youth services as mentors, friends or volunteers. Youth services has affected generations of kids, each on individually in a deeply personal and profound way.

Mission Statement

The AYS aims to provide young people useful experiences to promote healthy growth and development. It is our goal to build a network of affordable, accessible, safe, and challenging youth programs that appeal and respond to the diverse interests of young adolescents and their families. We've been going strong for 19 years and its because we know that it is all about the kids.

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Mission Statement

Andover Youth Services (AYS) was established to address the need for an increase in recreational, educational, social, and support programs for the middle school and high school populations within the community. AYS supplies the youth of Andover with programs, services, and activities throughout the year. The AYS provides a direct link that connects youth to their community. Andover's young people face many challenges and it is our mission to develop and maintain a program that has the ability to be flexible and encourages all youth to use their creativity and spontaneity in positive ways. We've been going strong for 19 years and its because we know that it is all about the kids. We are guided by Youth Development Practices and Principles. In an effort to better serve the needs of the community, the AYS and Andover Youth Foundation have been trying to fundraise for a Youth Center to give a home to this flourishing program.

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AYS History

With a small amount of grant money in 1994, Andover Youth Services was created and its founder and director, Bill Fahey was hired. For the past 18 years, Andover Youth Services has developed community service projects, outreach and development programs, recreational sports leagues, mentoring programs and emotional support services for thousands of young people.

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AYS History

The Andover Youth Services was created to respond to the community's need for quality programs and services for its young people. In 1993, a diverse cross-section of community groups came together to implement a dynamic youth program that would effectively and consistently address the ongoing needs of the young people in the Town of Andover. The community group believed that a solid Youth Services program could comprehensively address the issues of the youth population. In January 1994, Andover Youth Services (AYS) was formed under the Department of Community Services within the Town of Andover. This new division was established to address the need for an increase in recreational, educational, social, and support programs for the middle school and high school populations within the community. AYS provides the youth of Andover with programs, services, and activities throughout the school year. The AYS provides a direct link that connects youth to their community. Andover's young people face many challenges and it is our mission to develop and maintain a program that has the ability to be flexible and encourages all youth to use their creativity and spontaneity in positive ways. With connections to school guidance departments, the police, church groups, local human services agencies, merchant organizations, and community volunteers, Andover Youth Services infuses every young person who steps within its doorway with a sense of ownership, belonging, acceptance, and purpose. No idea is too "out of the box" to be considered. No venture is condemned as foolish. No young person is made to feel the AYS office is only for "those other kinds of kids". How is this accomplished? In school, students are evaluated and graded according to their abilities. At the Andover Youth Services, programs are undertaken with the knowledge that success is not guaranteed and failure is acceptable. The process is the learning tool and the heart of any Youth Services program. No young person is judged. No one is shamed. No one is bribed to participate. The learning environment is such that the kids "make it happen". They make it happen because they initiate the ideas. They make it happen because they are offered direction, encouragement, guidance, connection, and resources regardless of social status. Rich kids, middle class kids, and poor kids collaborate and participate side by side in AYS programs. "Who is who" is difficult to determine while hiking on the trails, planning a clothing drive, organizing a concert, or just hanging out at the office. Designed to be adventurous, innovative, creative, and playful, summer, weekend and after school programs offer what all kids want, a chance to be themselves, a chance to be heard, a chance to be directly involved and, ultimately, a place where they belong. AYS receives ideas and concepts directly from the young people themselves and then take these ideas and empowers the youth to make them happen. By interacting alongside young people, whether it is handing out flyers or creating plans for a new youth center, the programs the Youth Services creates and implements are immediate reflections of what the youth want and need.

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AYS = Youth Development

AYS is a youth development program with nearly 20 years of proven results.  AYS views young people individually, focusing on what makes each young person unique.  It is a positive, creative environment in which all kids---from the star of the basketball team to the president of the computer club and everyone in between---can feel like their voice counts.

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AYS=Youth Development

Celebrating 20 years of pioneering youth development work, the Andover Youth Services has the most comprehensive recreational, educational, social and support program for the 11-18 year old age group within Andover and beyond. The AYS follows a number of youth development goals based on literature from the Center For Youth Development and Policy Research. They include enhancing various aspects of a young person's identity including: a sense of safety and structure, high self-esteem, a feeling of having a future, a feeling of belonging to a community, a perception of responsibility and a sense of self-awareness. The organization also looks to improve various aspects of a young person's health including: physical, mental and intellectual, employability and civic and social involvement. AYS programs trips are individual experiential learning platforms where counselors are purposefully engaged in the lives of participants with shared direct experience and focused reflection. Through expeditions like rock climbing, hiking, kayaking, or surfing, young people are challenged both physically and mentally in a safe environment providing a gateway to self-discovery and building relationships. Having good fun is always the central objective on any AYS excursion and highly-trained staff ensure that all participants are part of the experience, receive positive feedback, and interact with peers. Every part of our outings, from the dynamic introductions, up through the activity and conclusion of the day, is an opportunity for teachable moments and igniting passion for living in the moment. The Andover Youth Services remains committed to the policy that every young person should have the opportunity to attend our programs, events, and trips, regardless of financial situations or otherwise. Over the course of the last 20 years, the AYS has provided hundreds of young people a chance to experience new programs, adventures, and activities with scholarships and sliding scale payment plans. AYS strives to create community-based programs that do not solely rely on fees or revenues. By eliminating financial restrictions, programs and activities become immediately more accessible for youth from all social backgrounds. AYS has relied on contributions from community organizations, local businesses, and corporations to fulfill our low or no fee philosophy. The healthy growth and development of adolescents relies on families, schools, the health sector, and community organizations working collectively to launch all young people on a successful life course. Young people need organized activities that connect participants to new and challenging experiences that will expand knowledge, promote fitness, and develop increased communication skills and responsibility. The Andover Youth Services (AYS) takes on the responsibility of youth development by providing a dynamic program filled with experiences,learning, and adventures that enrich participant's lives, create community connections, and provide opportunities for personal growth.

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