2023 YES to YOUTH “Bloom” Gala is Set for Saturday, August 12, 2023!

By: Michele Kooken
| Published 05/09/2023


THE WOODLANDS, TX -- Save the Date for the 2023 YES to YOUTH Gala! The event will be held on Saturday, August 12th at The Woodlands Waterway Marriott Hotel and Convention Center. This year’s event theme is “Bloom,” chosen by 2023 event chairs Andrea Aertker, Tiffany Baker, Kristin English, and Bethany Shrewsberry. “The theme captures our wish for the children and families that YES to YOUTH serves to “bloom” and thrive in all aspects of their lives,” says Kristin English.

The four chairs served as event co-chairs for last year’s gala and they each bring unique talents and skills to the process. To date, as a result of their leadership, the committee has raised over $250,000 in sponsorships and underwriting. “We are so thrilled that this group is investing their time and talent to raise essential funds to support our mission. Each of them is passionate about helping our children and families and they lead with that passion,” remarked Michele Kooken, Chief Executive Officer.

This year’s “Bloom” gala theme will come to life through vibrant décor that sets the stage for an elegant evening that includes a bid board, live auction, bourbon bar, martini bar, a curated dinner, after-party, and a program that promises to compel you to make a difference.

Each year, YES to YOUTH selects honorees who have made an indelible mark on the program through their generous donations of time and treasure. This year, the honoree is Kristin L. Young and the corporate honoree is the Howard Hughes Corporation. Kristin is a long-time volunteer at YES to YOUTH, not only devoting her time for YES to YOUTH events but spending time with the kids at the shelter. Most recently, she was a presenting sponsor for the February Galentine’s Luncheon held at Truluck’s. According to Bill Malone, Chairman of the Board, “Kristin is someone who always shows up to support our work. She walks alongside our staff and uplifts our kids with her compassion and generosity. She is so deserving of this honor.”

The Howard Hughes Corporation has been a true partner in the work of YES to YOUTH and was instrumental in the strategic direction of the agency early on. This is the 25th anniversary of Howard Hughes having a representative on the Board of Directors. “They have consistently supported events like the Maggert Golf Tournament, our annual gala, the SAY YES BridgeWay Capital Campaign, and have hosted their own Fall Giving Program to support YES to YOUTH. They have a passion for community service and helping our youth,” continues Bill Malone.

YES to YOUTH is grateful for the sponsors who have committed thus far. We are pleased to welcome back Tricia and Jack Futcher as the gala’s Presenting Sponsor and Kristin L. Young and Associates – Ameriprise and Richmond Realty Group as Diamond Sponsors for the event. Sponsorships and underwriting opportunities are available now at

YES to YOUTH is a community-based human services nonprofit serving Montgomery County since 1979. The mission of YES to YOUTH is to strengthen the emotional and mental health development of youth and families by providing crisis intervention, counseling, and suicide prevention services. They provide a safe and nurturing home where abused, battered, sex-trafficked, homeless, and at-risk youth begin healing from the past and become empowered for the future. Their programs include:

• Individual, Group, and Family Mental Health Counseling
• Crisis Intervention for Youth and Families
• Suicide Prevention for Youth and Families
• BridgeWay Emergency Youth Shelter (Ages 10-17)
• Prevention Presentations and Crisis Counseling in Schools
• Parenting and Youth Skills Groups
• 24-Hour Crisis Hotline 888-756-8682
• Support for Pregnant and Parenting Teens
• Street Outreach for Homeless Teens

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