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2024 Youth Leadership Institute

6/11/2024 | 11:00 AM - 6/14/2024 | 5:30 PM

Due to the current weather conditions, the in-person event scheduled for June 14th will now be held as a virtual Zoom webinar from 2 pm to 5 pm. If you have already registered, please check your email for details.

United Way of Broward County’s Commission on Behavioral Health & Drug Prevention’s Broward Youth Coalition (BYC) is hosting its annual Youth Leadership Institute (YLI) virtually on Tuesday, June 11th and on Friday, June 14th.

For any questions, please contact Jenna at 954-453-3725. Scroll down to the bottom for more information related to directions, venue details and contact information.

Click here to download the event flyer.

About YLI:

This FREE, 2-day youth leadership summit for 7th graders through high school graduating seniors will focus on mental health promotion, public speaking, youth advocacy, and substance use prevention. Join us your first week of summer for this 2-part event that will feature special guests, several peer-to-peer sessions, prizes and more!

Participants will have the chance to earn community service hours and participate in fun ways for a chance to earn special prizes and giveaways.

Pre-registration is required for both days. Limited space is available for Day 2.

Day 1 — Virtual via Zoom:

When: Tuesday, June 11, 2024 | 2 p.m. – 5 p.m.
Where: Virtual | Via Zoom
About: The virtual event on Day 1 (June 11th) will kick off the Youth Leadership Institute with an exciting and interactive live cooking demonstration on Zoom, featuring the renowned Celebrity Chef Chris Valdez! Don’t miss this chance to watch a culinary star and elevate your kitchen skills. Interactive Kahoot virtual games with a chance to win prizes!

Registration is now closed.

*To join the day 1 webinar, please register in advance. Upon registration, you’ll receive a confirmation email with the joining details.

Day 2 — Virtually via Zoom:

When: Friday, June 14, 2024 | 2 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Where: Virtually Due to Weather Conditions (Check email for Zoom link)
About: The virtual event on Day 2 (June 14th) will feature a workshop with featured keynote speaker, Emmy-nominated singer and songwriter Alexander Star. The day will also include a public speaking workshop presented by Renee Hope Cooper. Participants will discover how to authentically connect with others when presenting using a series of fun and proven techniques.

Click here to join the June 14th Zoom webinar.
Community Service Hours Information:

To receive community service hours, Broward County High School students must:

  • Access the virtual discussion via the Zoom link sent to their email upon registration.
  • Attend the discussion for the entire duration.

Any middle or high school-aged youth can receive community service hours. Service forms will be distributed at the end of day 2.


Renee Hope Cooper
Speaker & Transformative Communications Coach

Renee was raised in a family with minimal self-expression. Renee learned early on that talking about feelings and emotions mattered. She decided to speak for those who couldn’t and represented the non-profit world as a Speaker and Fundraiser, raising millions of dollars for multiple causes for local and national non-profit organizations. Renee knew that by educating and telling powerful stories while creating true connections with her audiences, she would create impactful moments with the audiences she was influencing. Along her 15+ year journey, many executives and leaders would ask her how she enjoys speaking so much and inquire about how they could be more authentic and creative. By using science-backed techniques, including Improvisation, coupled with other modalities and specific voice techniques, Renee leads highly interactive events.

Alexander Star
Emmy-nominated Singer and Songwriter

Alexander Star is an independent songwriter from South Florida whose music features everywhere from Super Bowl campaigns and inside the United Nations to international primetime TV themes and artist features.

A. Star recently became the second artist in history (following Elvis Presley) called upon by Greater Ft. Lauderdale to create an official anthem for the destination. “Laudy Dayo” streams everywhere and the music video is in production.

Alexander Star’s live performances have spanned 10+ countries to date and, as a social impactor, he’s helped hundreds of teens in foster care write & record original music about their life experiences via his proprietary ‘Inner Glow’ songwriting sessions.

Chris Valdes
Chef, Television Personality, Author, Philanthropist and Celebrity Caterer

Chris Valdes is a Latin American chef, television personality, author, philanthropist, and celebrity caterer. Through his culinary expertise, Chris has embraced many cultures, fusing Caribbean flavors with modern influences to create a host of iconic dishes. His latest television venture was as host and judge of ¡Que Delicioso! – the inaugural Spanish language original series on the Roku Channel, a seven-episode competition celebrating Latin cuisine which he hosted alongside Mexican-born Chef Marcela Valladolid. Additionally, being a finalist on “Food Network Star” and “Star Salvation,” introduced Chef Chris to a national audience and led to him being featured on the cover of several magazines and appearing on various national television shows. Valdes is now a frequent guest on “Good Morning America” and has also been featured on “LIVE with Kelly and Ryan”, Food Network’s “Chopped” and “The Sherri Shepherd Show.”


behavioral health and drug prevention


6/11/2024 | 11:00 AM
6/14/2024 | 5:30 PM
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Jenna Stein