Katie's YES Boston Marathon Fundraiser
Katie Wakiyamahas raised
of US$10,000 target
of target raised
days to go!
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My Story

Hi there! On April 15th, 2024, I'm running the Boston Marathon to fundraise for YES! YES (Youth Enrichment Services) is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to empower Boston youth through outdoor experiences that build confidence and prepare them to summit life's challenges. YES has a targeted focus on reaching low-to-moderate income kids in Dorchester, Roxbury, Mattapan, and JP. As a YES volunteer, I've spent the past year skiing and running with some amazing Boston kiddos. I've been so inspired by YES's mission, the kids we work with, and the impact outdoor activity can have on kid's lives that I am fundraising $10,000 and running 26.2 miles to support YES! I am honored to be selected for this team of 10 runners!

A little more about my experience with YES... I learned about YES last year and was immediately hooked. Skiing + kids = two of my favorite things! As an adult volunteer, you go on a training weekend where (with the help of Pat's Peak coaches) you learn how to coach and manage little skiers. After that, I was all set to go! A ski day with YES starts early in the morning where we ride the buses with our kids up to the mountain. We do lessons in the morning, break for lunch, and ski some more in the afternoon. The most important YESpectation (the expectations we have to keep all things in order) on the slopes is, "if you fall, you get back up!" because there is a lot of falling! But with those falls, it is thrilling when it starts to click for kids. I had never taught anyone how to ski before I started with YES, but I quickly realized that while it was challenging, it was also beyond exciting. The confidence and joy these kids have while working through a new sport like skiing is palpable. 

And when we aren't out having fun on the slopes (there are usually 4 trips per winter per group), YES volunteers spend 2-3 nights per month helping out at YES's own ski shop. We get kids fitted for their gear, catalog skis/snowboards, and do much more, as it takes a lot to manage gear for over 700 Boston youth.

I was so sad that ski season was coming to a close this past winter that I signed-up to also volunteer with YES's spring track program. Right now, I am also in the middle of fall season track where the mission remains the same. We just spend time moving around the track instead of the slopes.

YES families pay a program fee that is determined by a sliding scale based on household income, but for that to be possible, YES relies on generous support of foundations, corporations, and individual donors like you! I would greatly appreciate any and all support as I embark on this journey to raise $10k! Please consider donating to help give kids a chance at new experiences. Your gift will help YES youth get outdoors, develop leadership skills, and build a positive future. If you have any questions I am more than happy to chat about YES and my own experience as a volunteer. 

Interested in other ways to give to YES? YES also collects equipment and soft good items. Due to space constraints at YES headquarters, check out this list to see YES's greatest needs.

If you or your business are interested in donating an auction item to my fundraiser, please let me know.



Benefiting Charities

Youth Enrichment Services

Youth Enrichment Services

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The Event

128th Boston Marathon® Presented by Bank of America

128th Boston Marathon® Presented by Bank of America

Learn more
Katie Wakiyama
By Katie Wakiyama
Youth Enrichment Services