Our Impact - Xavier Harris


“My name is Xavier Harris and I am a sixteen year-old Junior attending West Orange High School. I was introduced to the Y when I was a three year-old participating in a mommy and me swim class. After several successful YMCA swim lessons, I joined the Y swim team at age seven. Then, in High School, I relied on my skills and confidence that I learned from my swim coach at the Y to propel me to the varsity team in my Freshman year.

I have participated in Y programs throughout the years and have grown as an individual in many ways because of the Y. I am currently the Vice President of the Y Teen Leaders Club at the West Essex YMCA. Being a part of the Teen Leaders Club at the Y has helped me be more responsible as an individual and learn how to give back to my community with service projects.

Last summer, I helped organize a trip to the Heifer International Learning Center at Overlook Farm in Rutland, Massachusetts. The camp taught us what it is like to live in a third-world country like Kenya or Ghana. We learned how to make our own food from scratch, how to live in a global village, feed and take care of animals, and how to successfully work together as a family. We learned so much from this experience. I am more humble now realizing how fortunate I am to have a caring family, great education, food on my plate and a roof over my head. I was able to learn first-hand how families and children in other countries live. I am so thankful for the Y.”

The YMCA make strengthening our communities our cause. We help individuals and families everyday become stronger, more connected and secure. Help us make an impact in your community. Give to the Y.