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Cristal Lopez Community Action, Inc. of Central Texas Youth Services Director.

Youth Task Force Healthy Habits Conference to be held tomorrow

Thursday, June 6, 2024

What could be more fun for a young person than a free event planned by their peers? The Youth Task Force, which is a 16 member voting body of students from 8th grade to high school that serve as an advisory board to the Core Four Partnership – a partnership between Texas State University, the city of San Marcos, Hays County and San Marcos Consolidated Independent School District – will be hosting an event for area youth from 8th to 12th grade as well as those that have recently graduated from high school. The Live Your Best Life Conference: Healthy Habits will occur from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on June 7 at the San Marcos Activity Center.

“The YTF creates a safe environment for students to share their thoughts and opinions about their community to better it for the rest of the youth,” said Cherry Vasquez, Youth Task Force vice president. “The Live Your Best Life Conference is so worth your time and will have a lasting impact. It's also so much fun.”

Cristal Lopez, Community Action, Inc. of Central Texas youth services director, said the event is unique in that it is a youth-led event and is the 4th Annual Live Your Best Life Conference. This year’s focus will be on Healthy Habits.

“The conference will include a keynote [speaker], mental health workshop, nutrition workshop and youth-led workshop with the goal of looking at overall habits that lead to a healthy lifestyle,” Lopez said. “The conference changes from year to year and is determined by the Youth Task Force. The Youth Task Force plans all aspects of this event and discusses these decisions at their monthly Youth Task Force meeting. Their goal is to provide a safe and inclusive environment for local area youth to learn and engage with each other.”

Vasquez said this year’s theme will entail everything from healthy eating to mental health and basic wellness.

“We are excited this year because we hope to raise our youth participation numbers to 75,” Vasquez said. “By instilling the importance of health at an early age we are creating a future generation of healthy minded people.”

According to Lopez, the conference will have workshops on overall healthy habits, nutrition and mental health by the Greater San Marcos Youth Council, Youth Task Force and the Hays County Food Bank, among others. She said the YTF requested workshops in these areas because there was a need among their peers.

Vasquez said the Greater San Marcos Youth Council will be kicking off the event with several fun educational activities based on general health to “set the tone” for the day.

“Hays County Food Bank will be sharing the importance of healthy eating and will prepare easy recipes. A mental health professional will be talking about the significance of poor mental health and healthy coping mechanisms,” Vasquez said. “This will be the first event that the YTF will be leading an activity.”

Lopez said the conference provides the Youth Task Force with a unique opportunity to plan a large-scale community event, and the members have actively made decisions on the scope, direction and goals of the conference.

“For members, it's an opportunity to share their voices. And for those youth who chose to participate in the conference, it’s an opportunity to engage with their peers in a safe and inclusive environment,” Lopez said. “Additionally, it allows YTF to receive feedback from their peers to help impact what activities, programs and partnerships they have for the upcoming year and what direction they should move towards for their annual conference. It allows for youth engagement both in the organizing, planning and implementation of this large scale event.”

Lopez said the YTF was created in Feb. 2020 alongside the establishment of the Core Four Partnership. This past school year, she said the YTF voted to expand membership to 8th graders and accepted its first two 8th grade members.

“[We] hope to continue the expansion of the Youth Task Force to eventually include middle school, high school and young adult groups,” Lopez said. “This provides an opportunity for youth to be actively involved in their community and participate in the Core Four Partnership. They are able to participate in other Core Four Partnership initiatives and provide guidance and feedback to the partnership.”

More information about the event and registration can be found at sites. conference/welcome.

San Marcos Record

(512) 392-2458
P.O. Box 1109, San Marcos, TX 78666