2022-2023 Youth and Government Open House:

Day: Monday, October 10 or Thursday, October 13:   6:00-7:00pm

Bellingham YMCA: 1256 N. State St, Bellingham

Everyone interested in finding out more should attend!



Whatcom Delegation

Youth & Government teaches leadership and communication skills by examining public policy in a safe and non-partisan environment. Teens write and debate their own bills, take turns presiding over the delegation, and have an opportunity to present their bill in Olympia at the Washington State Youth Legislature.

Our motto: "Democracy must be learned by each generation."



  • Meet 500 high-achieving students from across the state.
  • Find your voice and have your opinions heard.
  • Attend the Governor's Ball at the State Capitol Building.
  • Have the opportunity to impact real law.
  • Attend district events in addition to state events in Olympia.


AGES:  Grades 8-12

PROGRAM DATES:  Meetings are held weekly on Thursdays, October 14-May 4

For more information, please contact Lynda Purdie, 360-255-0632 or lpurdie@whatcomymca.org

2019’s 72nd Convention was Huge Success

Every student researched, wrote, and debated individual bills on various issues facing the state and nation. All of our participants had their bills pass out of committee, and most of them were able to debate on the main floor of the House or Senate. Six students had their bill signed by the Youth Governor. 

In addition to the legislative process, students at the convention published their own newspaper,  held elections for next year’s leadership, attended a Governor’s Ball in the Capitol Rotunda (the only group allowed to have a dance in the Capitol Building), and listened to guest speakers Former Secretary of State Sam Reed and Chief Justice Mary Fairhurst.  

Three students from our delegation were elected to major office positions for next year’s convention. Madeline Ellis will serve as the 73rd Youth Governor, representing the program on both a state and national level. Caden Stoane will serve as next year’s Speaker of the House, and Thomas Cassella will be the Secretary of State.

Finally, our delegation was recognized as the Outstanding Delegation of the Year! We are so proud of our students for all they achieved this year and look forward to doing even greater things next year.