2017-18 National Military Youth of the Year
2017-18 Pacific Military Youth of the Year
Exactly 10 days before Kaila turned 16, she hugged her dad goodbye as he set off on a yearlong deployment to Korea. Though she’d just moved to Utah that year, in the midst of a difficult farewell, Kaila found solidarity at her BGCA-affiliated Youth Center. While she struggled at times to make friends at school, Kaila made lasting friendships at the Youth Center, and found comfort in knowing others who understood her experiences as a military child. Before she knew it, her heart was invested in the Youth Center.
She poured herself into Youth Center academic programs, tutoring younger kids with the Power Hour homework help program, and serving as a mentor through the SMART Girls program. As a Keystone Club member, Kaila and her peers used the popular game “Pokemon Go” to incentivize teens to clean up local trails. During a difficult time in her life, the Youth Center helped Kaila thrive academically and personally.
Kaila plans to attend the University of Utah to study mechanical engineering and alternative energy specialization.