Generation to Generation: YDA Service Day

On Thursday, July 30, Sharefest Youth Development Academy middle school students had the privilege of serving alongside youth from The Asomugha Foundation’s College Tour for Scholars (ACTS) program to transform the Wilmington Senior Center as part of a larger refurbishing project funded by a generous $45,000 gift from Phillips 66.

During the service day, the nearly 120 students assisted with new landscaping, created tiles for a mosaic, made cards of encouragement for homebound seniors, chatted with residents, and more, all with a goal of creating a welcoming and comfortable environment for community members. This service day continued the work started by Summer YDA students at the first summer service day on July 16.

“When I found out that Sharefest was coming with Phillips 66, I was really excited. I’ve been excited since the first day because we really need the help,” said Maria Martinez, Director of Aging for the Wilmington Senior Center. “To see these kids so happy to be working and doing and trying their best, to make the center a better looking place...I’m really, really grateful for you guys being here and doing this for our center. Thank you!”

The center serves about 150 community members each day who stop by to attend various classes, such as zumba, art, craft, sewing, and more. Weekly clubs meetings and senior trips are organized through the center, as well as workshops to help residents learn new skills. The center’s outreach program delivers an estimated 37,000 meals to homebound residents annually.

“I am thrilled that together with the Asomugha Foundation and Phillips 66, we can improve and transform this facility to serve generations of Wilmington residents,” said Chad Mayer, Sharefest Executive Director. “This project also allows us to instill in youth from the YDA and ACTS programs the importance of community involvement and service as they prepare to become future leaders.”

This is Sharefest’s second year partnering with the Asomugha Foundation, and both organizations share a passion for developing youth to be future leaders, a key component of the service day.

“The Asomugha Foundation is proud to partner with Sharefest and Phillips 66 on this day of service. It is important to give back, and this venture speaks to the heart and mission of our organization,” said Dr. Lilian Asomugha, Founder, President, and CEO of the Asomugha Foundation.

The work being completed is at no cost to the center, thanks to Phillips 66. The funds from their gift will allow for additional work to take place including new paint for rooms and hallways, landscaping, and more.

“Phillips 66 strongly believes in giving back to the communities in which we live and work, and we have deep roots in the city of Wilmington,” said Phillips 66 Public Affairs Manager Janet Grothe. “We’re excited to be a part of this important work alongside Sharefest, the Asomugha Foundation, and local youth as we meet community needs while developing future leaders.”






That's a Wrap! Summer YDA, Week 4


Nancy Perez from Phillips 66 shares her leadership story with YDA high school students, and reminds them that even small gestures can make a big difference in the lives of others.


Middle school students work on their art assignments.


Ready for tennis! One of many activities students participated in to encourage an active lifestyle.


Nice swing! High school students enjoy a quick game of softball.


High school students practice their civic awareness presentations in preparation for their final speech.


Students listen as Assemblymember Mike Gipson shares his journey into politics and leadership, and inspires students to apply their strengths to reach their goals.


Middle school students create mosaic tiles as part of their service day at the Wilmington Senior Center.


Another successful year of the Summer Youth Development Academy! Thanks to all our sponsors who make this event possible, and free for all youth participants!


Check back for additional YDA updates and be sure to follow Sharefest on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter for more YDA news. #SFYDA






New Students Dive In: Summer YDA, Week 3

Sharefest welcomed 100 new middle school students as session two of Summer YDA began on Monday. Our amazing counselors welcomed them with open arms as students dove right into a week of learning and fun activities. High school students continued into week three of their program, continuing to work on lessons on writing, leadership, and community engagement. Check out this week’s highlights!


New MS students arrive for summer session two!


Students get to know their new groups and practice working as a team.


YDA counselors help make this program a success and build great relationships with their groups.


Students work on their writing assignment for the day.


Staying active while running soccer drills.


High school students work on their community plan projects.


High school students hear from and speak with Hattie Harrison, human resources specialist for Alcoa Fastening Systems and representative for the Alcoa Foundation, learning how she got to where she is, and what they can do to prepare now for their futures.


High school students also met with and interviewed Mayola Delgado, who works in community empowerment and communications with Univision Los Angeles.


Check back for additional YDA updates and be sure to follow Sharefest on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter for more YDA news. #SFYDA






A Week of Creativity, Learning, and Service: Summer YDA, Week 2

Week two has flown by, and it has been an incredible week of learning at Session 1 of the Summer Youth Development Academy. Students further explored what it means to be a leader and uncovered how they can use their strengths and gifts to lead. During their classes, students practiced expressing thoughts and ideas creatively through art and writing projects. Swim lessons and team-building activities allowed time for students to get active while having fun. And high school students heard from special guest speakers, including Joyce Sharman, wife of the late Bill Sharman, 10-time NBA Champion, and Chris Wilson, field representative for Assemblymember Mike Gipson. On Thursday, students learned to lead by serving during a day of giving back to the community. Check out some of this week’s highlights in the photos below:


YDA Service Day: Students arrive at Wilmington Senior Center ready to help beautify and clean the space to create a refurbished, welcoming environment for community members. Thanks to Phillips 66 for generously providing funds to allow us to complete this important work!


Students eagerly jump into their work at the senior center, knowing they are making a tangible difference for the community of Wilmington.


Students chat with local residents who will benefit from the work they completed.


During an art lesson, students decorate the covers of their creative writing journals as a way to express who they are through art.


Together, the students’ journals create a mural, designed by local artist, PeQue.


High school students work on creating a point of view presentation board to highlight a need in their community.


Enjoying lunch, thanks to our friends at Chick-fil-A!


Joe Buck, a USC and RUHS alumnus and professional basketball player in Europe for 11 years, stops by for lunch with students who sold 10 or more Toyota Opportunity Drawing tickets and encouraged them to reach for their goals and persevere!


Check back for additional YDA updates and be sure to follow Sharefest on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter for more YDA news. #SFYDA






Learning to Lead: Summer YDA, Week 1

Session one of the Summer Youth Development Academy began on Monday, July 6, with 118 middle school students and 26 high school students. Students had a blast enjoying the week’s activities, from team building activities and leadership sessions to basketball and swim lessons. Check out a few highlights from the week!


Students arrive at California State University, Dominguez Hills for the first day of Summer YDA.


Students learn what to expect throughout the week and about YDA’s focus on service through leadership.


Through team building activities, students learn to work together to achieve a goal.


The high schoolers hit the courts for a quick game of basketball.


During a session on leadership, middle school youth discuss skills they see in leaders.


Students bond during swim lessons.


Gabriela Medina, field deputy for Councilman Joe Buscaino, speaks with high school students about getting involved in the community and being leaders for positive change.


Pilar Hoyos from Watson Land Co. shares her leadership story with high school students.



A special visit from Anthony Pirrozi and his team from Boeing closed the week. They inspired middle schoolers by teaching them about satellites, sharing personal stories about how they got where they are today, and demonstrating how rockets work by creating water bottle rockets. The kids had a blast!


Check back for additional YDA updates and be sure to follow Sharefest on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter for more YDA news. #SFYDA