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Youth Gaining Opportunities, Recognition and Skills


  • YORS is a group of students from every middle and high school in GFPS
  • YORS groups work at the building level to enhance the work of the Grand Forks Youth Commission (GFYC).
  • YORS exists to identify, promote, improve, increase and provide services and programs for young people in Grand Forks. YORS is a group of 5-20 students that meets once each month.  YORS actively engages youth in the decisions of city government and other community activities that affect youth.  YORS is a leadership building program that encourages youth to discuss the concerns and needs of their community. 
  • YORS participants believe young people can make a difference in their community. Every YORS student brings individual characteristics, like personal values, attitudes, beliefs, knowledge, behavioral skills, and personality characteristics that contribute to his or her YORS work achievements. 
  • YORS makes decisions regarding what opportunities exist to give back to the community by focusing on needs and partnering with city leaders to develop solutions.
  • YORS helps to make this community a better place to practice healthy choices and reduce health risk behaviors that influence youth. YORS will support the ongoing goal of the GFYC to change the acceptability of alcohol use and encourage alcohol-free alternatives to support the desire to delay age of onset, reduce alcohol use among young people who have already tried drinking and limit the number of alcohol –related problems of young people. 

The GFYC and the GFPS YORS building groups are based on America’s Promise, a national program created by Colin Powell, an American statesman and a retired four star general in the United States Army. He was the 65th US secretary of State. Grand Forks was honored with Colin Powell’s prestigious award, “100 Best Communities for Young People” in 2005, 2006, and 2007. 

The primary objectives of the GFYC are based on the Five Promises of America’s Promise:

  1.  Caring Adults
  2. Safe Places
  3. Healthy Start
  4. Effective Education
  5. Opportunities to Help Others
  • The GFYC was established 10 years ago by Mayor Brown. It is intended to create a voice for area youth in city government.
  • The mission of the GFYC is “A cooperative coalition of youth and adult mentors working to enhance the lives of Grand Forks Youth.”
  • YORS building groups will have two representatives attend the GFYC meetings at city hall each month.

For more information about the YORS groups in each middle school and high school contact Sarah Shimek at .  Or go to

For more information about the GFYC go to find “Quick Links” and click on Grand Forks Youth Commission.