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'Everyday Leadership' making a difference for Boise students

The program is in six elementary schools in Boise.

BOISE — There is an education program going on right now called "Everyday Leadership" that is helping low-income students in the 5th and 6th grades, succeed.

The program is a collaboration between the Treasure Valley YMCA, the Boise Sunrise and Boise Metro Rotary Clubs, and the Boise School District.

"What I see with my kids is just a huge improvement in their self-confidence," said Tim Lowe, who is the Principal at Taft Elementary School.

Lowe has been involved in "Everyday Leadership" since the beginning in 2013. He says there are so many benefits.

"Communication, cooperation, teamwork, taking responsibility for our own actions, teaching them how to advocate for themselves," explained Lowe.

The Treasure Valley YMCA provides the curriculum for the program. Kersey Hill oversees the six elementary schools in Boise. She is the Downtown YMCA Youth Director. Hill says she has noticed a big difference in the kids taking part in "Everyday Leadership" as well.

"We've seen a bunch of things. An increase in their GPA, we've seen an increase in attendance, a decrease in behavioral instances at school, and just that overall confidence and motivation is up," said Hill.

INTERVIEW: LobsterFest benefits Everyday Leadership program in Boise schools

Hill and Lowe say it's important to teach 5th and 6th graders about leadership right before they go into junior high school.

"Just telling them these are the tools you have and this is how you can use them to be successful," said Hill.

"We talk to the kids that sometimes leading can be quiet," said Lowe. "You don't necessarily need to be the guy or gal out in front. It can be supporting others making the right choices."

"Everyday Leadership" is offered to low-income students in six Boise elementary schools. It costs about $7,000 per school to support the program, which is bi-weekly.

The Boise Sunrise Rotary is holding it's biggest fundraiser of the year later this month. It's called LobsterFest and is happening on September 22nd at Boise State University. Money raised from the event will go towards "Everyday Leadership" and other nonprofit youth programs. To buy tickets click here. It is also being hosted by Boise Southwest, Boise Downtown and Eagle/Garden City Rotary Clubs.

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