About Us

Teenagers are powerful and can change the world. But without training and support, they often don’t.

“Way back in 2001, I taught a class called ‘Animals and the Environment’ at a middle-school after-school program in San Francisco. On the first day, after class, an 8th grader named Margaret came up to me and anxiously asked me ‘When do we start doing something to actually help animals and the environment?’ I was amazed and inspired. This was the first class, and we had only just begun to discuss the issues!

This confirmed what I already believed: when kids hear about something wrong in the world, their first reaction is often to want to do something about it. I recognized that without support and training to take action, they probably won’t. That’s when I began to lay the plans for YEA Camp.” -YEA Camp founder and Executive Director Nora Kramer

YEA Camp was founded on the belief that, from a young age, people are naturally idealistic and compassionate and want to help others. They can see the world for what it could be and instinctively want to take action to make the world a better place. Yet, despite thousands of hours in school, most young people do not learn skills, have role models, or receive encouragement to address some of the biggest problems in our society. Without being instilled with the tools and belief that they can make a difference, people can become resigned or cynical about having the power to impact the world around them. YEA Camp is committed to filling this gap — to ensuring that people who want to make a difference in the world have the knowledge, skills, confidence, and community to do so.

Since 2009, we’ve been doing everything we can to help young people connect with what matters to them and to take action to make a difference. We’ve worked with hundreds of inspiring young people who tell us that YEA Camp was one of the most impactful and life-changing experiences they have had. Our campers have gone on to do amazing things to make their schools, communities, and world a better place, and we are honored and thrilled to have the opportunity to work with such inspired and inspiring young change-makers.

YEA Camp is run by educators and activists with years of experience working with youth and bringing about social change for a more peaceful and sustainable world. To learn more about our staff, see our staff bios page.

This camp has truly changed my life. You have inspired me to do so much with my life and to make the world a truly better place. You have inspired me to believe in myself and to not just say ‘I’m just a kid, what can I do?’ Because of you, I have been able to actually make a difference, even within only a few months.”  -Bianca, 15, California
To hear more about YEA Camp in our campers’ voices, see our testimonials page.

How do we do what we do? Take a look at an overview of our program, or look at some of our activities to get an idea of what we do at camp!