Riley’s Way first annual Youth Leadership Retreat was held September 20 – 22, 2019 at Timber Lake Camp in Shandaken, NY. We brought together close to 100 inspiring young women and their mentors from around the country to create meaningful connections with their like-minded peers.

During the weekend, the teens participated in skill-building workshops, including communication techniques, relationship building, and action planning and camp activities, such as hiking, arts and crafts, dance class, and a ropes course. The biggest impact was made during the teen-led workshops, where the participants were able to hear about, and be inspired by, the work of their fellow change makers.

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Click to read participants own words on how the Retreat impacted them!

“Kindness is a positive-sum action within limitless power. You can create kindness from nothing, and with kindness, you can enable others to do anything.“ -Ashley, WA

“The atmosphere was celebratory and joyful…I could feel the kindness surrounding me throughout the entire weekend.“ -Marjorie, NY

“To most, kindness is a virtue or trait but, because of Riley’s Way, more people are understanding that it’s about shining through difficulties and to “always have a smile on your face” as Riley said.“ -Julia, NJ

“I was grateful to be surrounded by so many bright shining souls searching for ways to make a difference in the world, and to tell them a bit about my daughter.“ -Ian Sandler, Riley’s Way Co-founder


Through the Youth Leadership Retreat, teens will:

• Join a community of like-minded peers and create meaningful relationships

• Gain leadership skills, including communication, relationship building, and action planning

• Be able to implement a project in their community that creates a lasting, positive change

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