The Young Ambassadors Program (YAP) is a social program for young people ages 18 to 25 diagnosed with autism. *New for the fall 2019 “YAP Active”
YAP is held on WEDNESDAY (new day and time Sept 2019) evenings 6:30 or 6:45 pm to 8:00 or 8:15 depending on the activity and location, throughout the year and participants are encouraged to come and hang out with like-minded peers.
The program provides a mix of activities including games nights, active recreation, community activities, social skills development, information sessions and guest speakers… all based on the interests of the group. The goal is to give young people a place to hang out with their peers, help them feel connected with others, and be a part of our community. **Visit our news and events page posts for a schedule information (future and past)**
Participants also have opportunities to volunteer at AOK events and are encouraged to offer suggestions to the AOK Board of Directors about the needs of young adults with autism in our community.
Note that participants must be independent for self care and safety, or attend with a support person. They should be able to participate in activities with the intermittent help of their peers and our young leaders. Our leaders are not able to address individual needs on a continuous basis. Parents are welcome to attend for support if needed, with the hopes that as the year progresses the participant becomes more independent and comfortable attending on their own. Ideally, we are hoping to give young adults with autism a place to hang out without hovering parents.
What: Young Ambassadors Program (YAP)
When: Wednesdays 6:30 – 8:30ish pm plus “YAP ACTIVE” in the gym every second and fourth Wednesday. (If this becomes popular we will consider expanding it to weekly) Note that in Sept & Oct there we have some outdoor activities, with earlier start times – Visit our news and events page for a detailed schedule, and watch for emails from the YAP leaders once you are registered.
Next Session: Sept 2019 – June 2020 Cost: Mostly free
Where: 1434 Graham St, Kelowna, Okanagan Boys & Girls Club
Past Activities Sept 2019 to June 2020:
Jan 29 – Introduction to Sword Fighting Jan 22 – Public skating. Jan 15 – Guest Speaker Joanne Poole Discussion on friendship and dating skills. Jan 8 – Dungeons and Dragons . December 18 – EXIT room. December 11 – Badminton and crafts. December 4 – Dungeons and Dragons . November 27: Basketball and craft night. November 20: Bowling at BNA Brewing Company and Eatery. November 13: Music at Glenmore Elementary. There will be stations to try a variety of instruments and a gym for a quiet space. Bring an instrument if you want … or plan to play us your favourite song and tell us why you like it. November 6: Dungeons and Dragons and character building with our guest Dungeon Masters. Even if you’ve never played, come and join. There will be beginners and experienced players Oct 30 – Halloween Extravaganza (dress up if you want!) Games, candy, pumpkin carving **Earlier start 6:30 Oct 23 – Chess Night. There will also be access to the gym. (6:45-8:15) at Martin Center Oct 16 – Kelowna Corn Maze. Details via email Oct 9 – Poker Night, Games, Gym time (6:45-8:15) at Martin Center Oct 2: World Beat Family Golf – driving range. Sept 25: Frisbee Golf at the base of Knox Mountain. Sept 18: Games (Hike cancelled due to weather), Sept 11: Beach Day. Sept 4: Registration and games.
Past Activities March 2019 to June 2019:
June 26 *Wed* , 2019: Lawn bowling lesson at the Kelowna Club City Park. June 18, 2019: Outdoor sports – badminton etc. June 11, 2019: Exploring Music Evening – using various instruments. June 4, 2019: Dungeons and Dragons @ Kelowna Library. May 28, 2019: Museum Tour. May 21, 2019: YMCA Connects Program information. May 14, 2019: Badminton cancelled due to weather. Had games night instead. May 7, 2019: Dungeons and Dragons. May 5, 2019: Activities at the Kelowna Autism Walk . Ben Lee Park 12-2pm. April 30, 2019: Driving Range – Kelowna World Beat Family Golf. April 23, 2019: coffee/tea & chat at Tim Hortons. April 16, 2019: Board & Video Game Night. April 9, 2019: Kelly O’Bryan’s. April 2, 2019: Dungeons and Dragons. March 26, 2019: Poker Night. March 19, 2019: Laser Tag
A bit about our past: Thanks to Telus for their $5000 donation to get this program started in 2016. Telus Ambassadors also donated a microwave oven, vacuum and table as items for our meeting space. Thank You.
Thank you to PAFN (Pacific Autism Family Network) for the use of their space rent free in April – June 2019.
For Sept 2018 to June 2019, the YAP program was free of charge thanks to our generous donors, with occasional $5-15 fees to cover the costs of some activities chosen by the group (exceptions made if payment is difficult).
The Young Ambassadors in Action!
Click on our logo to watch the video!