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E.J. Porth

Gregory Owens

People get really down on teenagers these days. They say they're lazy or reckless or self-involved.

My time working with the Bozeman Youth Initiative has shown me the complete opposite is true.

At BYI we empower and encourage youth to make things happen, from events, concerts, and art shows to fundraisers, movie screenings, and environmental education.

Sometimes all it takes is someone to tell you that your crazy out-of-the box idea could actually work and you should go for it. I've seen kids with those crazy out-of the-box ideas turn them into realities.

With support from BYI funding and staff I've seen those kids grow tremendously through the process.  They learn teamwork, volunteer coordination, marketing, interviewing, fundraising, budgeting skills and more.

At BYI we simply say yes, and to many kids, that's what they need most in a world that thinks they deserve no's. 

Program Director E.J. Porth and Zima.