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2018 STARS National Conference, presented by FRIENDS FIRST

Event organized by FRIENDS FIRST

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The STARS National Conference (SNC) is an action-packed, four-day event held each summer by Denver nonprofit FRIENDS FIRST to empower and motivate teens to become leaders, foster healthy relationships and avoid high-risk behaviors. Teens spend time on a college campus while building life-skills and learning to be positive role models in their communities.

SNC brings together 300-400 teens each year to build leadership and mentoring skills and foster healthy relationships. This is done through workshops, large group speakers and other engaging activities over four days. It is a truly memorable experience for teens, widely reviewed as our mentors' most memorable time in our programs. The conference builds life-long friendships with like-minded teens, adult mentors as they take away moving messages from our presenters.

Who can attend?
Students entering eighth grade through 2019 high school graduates may attend as youth participants. If attending as a group, one adult chaperone must attend for every 10 teens. As this event is a part of our STARS program, students in our program are first come, first serve, but we do accept teens who are interested in attending. Please call 720.981.9193 to learn more.

How does the conference connect to your mission and support FRIENDS FIRST programs?
This is the 21st year that FRIENDS FIRST has held the STARS National Conference. The conference is an extension and a culmination of our STARS peer mentoring program. STARS is run during the school year in locations across 10 states, headquartered in Denver where we serve about 30-40 partner schools across Colorado each year. Our out-of-state partners also bring teens to the conference. STARS functions with our adult program coordinators working during the school day in our partner schools to facilitate mentoring relationships between older high school mentors and younger high school and middle school mentees. Learn more about STARS at https://www.friendsfirst.org/stars-mentoring-program

To “Be Relentless” means to support your own goals as you support others. You have a mindset that we all succeed together, and that nobody can tell you what you can’t do.

FRIENDS FIRST is celebrating its 25th anniversary in 2018. This year's theme also recognizes the tireless work, resiliency, change, and attitude that a nonprofit in the teen development sector experiences over 25 years. It also highlights our evolution – today we are a stronger and more diversified organization than we were in 1993, serving more students creating the best possible outcomes to help those students succeed.

Our relentless attitude should be passed on to teenagers in order to encourage all young people that they can be great no matter their background, expectations or environment. We empower all youth to strive for more than they expect from themselves and even more than society may expect of them.

Visit starsconference.org to learn more, and follow the links to our sponsorship page to find ways to partner. For more information on how to partner, sponsor a student or a part of the conference, please call 720.981.9193 for more information or email info@friendsfirst.org.

Registration opens in April. Stay tuned for more details!