Grizzly Gazette

Club Beat: Youth & Government

Youth+and+Government+advisor+Roman+Reyna+%28left%29+speaks+to+club+members.+
Youth and Government advisor Roman Reyna (left) speaks to club members.

Youth and Government advisor Roman Reyna (left) speaks to club members.

Photo Courtesy of Julio Lopez

Photo Courtesy of Julio Lopez

Youth and Government advisor Roman Reyna (left) speaks to club members.

Julio Lopez, Staff Writer

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“Believe it or not, I want you to fail. The process of learning and growing is to fail, we encourage you to fail so that you learn what your mistakes are.” Roman Reyna is a  former councilman and school board member of Santa Ana and runs the Youth and Government club at Godinez Fundamental High School.

Youth & Gov. used to be part of YMCA but due to a low amount of people showing up, YMCA dropped Youth & Gov. However, Renya was able to bring it back and with the help of other adults, he is able to run it. Reyna takes time off his day to come, talk to students, and give them courage and a voice.  

Youth & Gov. currently has around 20 people from different schools; Spurgeon, Santa Ana, Valley, Segerstrom, Saddleback, Mendez, and Godinez. “There are kids who Uber it to get in the program,” said Reyna. They all meet at Godinez on Mondays and Wednesdays by the Round Table near the Grizzly bear statue after school from 4 to 6 p.m. “I can’t describe how much Y&G help out, not just the community but for ourselves,” says Senior Mario Renia who has been in the program for seven years.   

Youth and Government has changed and helped many students have courage, learn responsibility and have a voice. Reyna explains that after being involved in many civic conferences and sitting on different committees. He realized that Youth & Gov. are always going to need his assistance. He believes that Youth & Gov. needs good leadership, and he is trying to get more leaders out of the youth and be able to better society.

Youth & Gov. also meet outside of school during the summer at a nearby park of their choice. They mostly go around the community to talk about the problems they see and how they start a bill that will help solve problems in their neighborhood. They work on getting a bill started but also, debate on certain bills. “I’ve done Y&G since freshman year and plan to keep doing it and be an example to the coming freshmens and others who want to give it a try,” says sophomore Sonia Bravo that has been in the program for two years.  

Youth & Gov. is sponsored by companies such as Suavecito which allows them to go to many fields trips throughout the year. They try and get some donors out there that could help them out or assist them in a way that certain events can be free for the students.

One of three main events is the introduction to the program that takes place in Fresno. Students get to meet delegates from other cities. The second main event is the Bench Trial where the delegate gets to be a defender, prosecutor, department of finances, lobbyist, legislative analyst, or media. The third main event is in Sacramento and students are left on their own to try to find a way to refute their bills without help from others.

“Y&G has given me a motive in life. It amazes me every time I come because I learn so much. Leadership communication skills are a plus,” says junior Tristan Oriana from Santa Ana High School and who has been in the program for four years.

Youth & Gov. also offers a lot of community service opportunities, where they help with certain events such as: ASB training, public forum, park events, and Christmas toy give aways.

“I think it’s important to be involved in our community, to give back our experience that we learned in the program,” Says Oriana. To join, you will need to talk to Roman Reyna at the Grizzly Bear statue after school at 4 p.m. every Monday and Wednesday.

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Club Beat: Youth & Government