The Return of the Youth to AALEAD VA

By Yonsoo Kang, VA Programs Coordinator
Photo Courtesy by AALEAD Staff


Hello again!

AALEAD VA Summer Horizons finished with an amazing trip to Six Flags after six weeks of fun and intense activities.

AALEAD @ 6 Flags

VA youth from Poe, Holmes, and Annandale before ending the park.

As autumn draws closer, after school programs are beginning.  In fact, I have been meeting with Holmes MS youth since the third week of September!  The youth are already excited to come back to AALEAD in Virginia.  Shaima, VA Programs Manager, and I were pondering, “What draws our youth to keep coming back to AALEAD?”  So we asked them and received various responses.


AALEAD VA Summer Horizons Program

Jimmy L. (right) at Summer Program


“This is my second year with AALEAD and I know it’s going to be just as great as the last. I met so many new people, learned many things, and started to appreciate my culture. I found a family that isn’t tied together by blood, but by strength.” — Jimmy L. – 8th Grade, Holmes MS


AALEAD Icebreakers

Trang rushes to help her team win Tic-Tact-Toe Relay




“AALEAD is my second family because I built a stronger relationship with all the inspirational people I’ve met. Even though I have been with AALEAD for only 1 year, I am continually pushed to step out of my comfort zone. I’ve learn a lot through the many opportunities this program has provided for us, ranging from college support to fostering leadership skills. I got to improve my public speaking skills.” —Trang C. – Senior, Annandale HS


AALEAD Community Service

Betsi (Second from the left) helps with a community service activity


“I’m returning to AALEAD this year because each year I have great experiences. Also, I have made beautiful friends and memories and would like to keep creating more of them this year, too.” —Betsi N.- Senior, Annandale HS


AALEAD Adventures!

Christina T. (Left) take a break from rock climbing at Sportrock. Photo Courtesy to Tina Ngo.





“I have returned to AALEAD because… [it is] another family where I feel safe, loved, and can express my feelings and not be scared. AALEAD has helped me to become a better person. I care more about my culture and I learned skills outside of school such as becoming more independent and confident in myself.” —Christina T. – 8th Grade, Holmes MS

AALEAD Youth-Led Workshop

Henry H. (farthest to the right) prepares for the team challenge, Mitten Balloon Pop.






“I, Henry H., have returned to AALEAD because we are a family that helps each other out when one of us faces a problem. I think about our bonding experiences with all of the AALEAD members from middle school and high school. That is why I returned, and will return, to AALEAD.” —Henry H – 8th Grade, Holmes MS




Near or far, wherever you are… Once you join AALEAD, you’re part of the family.

AALEAD Youth Gift to Staff

A gift from VA youth to Shaima, Yonsoo, and Tina. The youth stamped their painted thumbs as leaves on a tree.

Coordinators and managers, good luck with programs!  It’s gonna be great! #igbg

Email Newsletters with VerticalResponse