Who we are

The Young Marines strengthens the lives of America’s youth by teaching the importance of self-confidence, academic achievement, honoring our veterans, good citizenship, community service, and living a healthy, drug-free lifestyle. The Young Marines promotes the mental, moral, and physical development of its members. The program focuses on character building and leadership and promotes a lifestyle that is conducive to being productive members of society.


Who we are NOT

The Young Marines program is not a program for youths with serious disciplinary problems, substance abuse issues or lengthy histories in juvenile court.

Our Mission

The mission of the Young Marines is to positively impact America’s future by providing quality youth development programs for boys and girls that nurtures and develops its members into responsible citizens who enjoy and promote a healthy, drug-free lifestyle.



The Young Marines is open to all youth, boys and girls, ages 8 through completion of high school. The only membership requirement is that the youth must be in good standing at school. Since the Young Marines’ beginnings, in 1959, with one unit and a handful of boys, the organization has grown respectively with units throughout the country and overseas.

If you are interested in joining, please visit our How to Join section.


Our Volunteers

Young Marines units are community-based programs lead by dedicated adult volunteers. Many of these volunteers are former, retired, active duty, or reserve Marines who believe passionately that the values they learned as Marines had a positive effect on them. It is through these caring adults that Young Marines learn the inner values of Honor, Courage, and Commitment while instilling our core values of Leadership, Discipline and Teamwork. Adult volunteers are individually screened by the National Headquarters based on background information and recommendations provided with each person’s registration.

Interested in joining our Staff?  Contact the Unit Commander and let him know!


Young Marines learn a great variety of subjects both in and outside of the guidebooks.  These topics include, but are not limited to:

Close Order Drill
Marine Corps History
Young Marine History
Field Skills & Survival
Map & Compass
Public Speaking
Life Skills
First Aid & CPR
Health & Fitness

Community Service

Young Marines, like the Marine Corps, have a mission of service to others.  This is done by a wide variety of community service events.  Young Marines can participate with our unit’s activities and also seek out their own favorite ways to help others.

Our concentration as a unit are on Veteran Appreciation, Helping other youth, Conservation, and Drug Demand Reduction.  If you have a great project in one of these areas you would like to see our unit at, please don’t hesitate to reach out.

Extra Activities

Not everything in our program is about working and learning, we also have a great deal of fun.  We have a variety of special events including camp outs, lock-ins, field trips, and more.  Our Young Marines always have a new and exciting activity to look forward to each and every month.

Our National Headquarters also offers the SPACES program each summer.  SPACES stands for Special Programs, Activities, Challenges, Encampments, and Schools.  So whether you are into sailing, horseback riding, or want to hone your leadership skills and one of the three leadership schools… we have something for you!

Unit Awards

  • 2017 – Unit of the Year (Regiment)
  • 2017 – Drug Demand Reduction (Fulcrum Shield)
  • 2017 – Drug Demand Reduction (Kiki Camarena)
  • 2017 – MCL Commendation
  • 2017 – YM Encampment (National)
  • 2017 – Drill Competition (Regimental)
  • 2017 – YM Encampment (Regimental)
  • 2016 – Unit of the Year (Regimental)
  • 2016 – Drill Competition (Regimental)
  • 2016 – Drill Encampment (Regimental)
  • 2015 – Distinguished Unit Citation
  • 2015 – Drill Competition (Battalion)
  • 2015 – YM Encampment (Battalion)
  • 2015 – Organized Unit Trip (Battalion)
  • 2008 – Unit of the Year (Division)
  • 2006 – MCL Unit Commendation
  • 2006 – Distinguished Unit Citation
  • 2005 – Meritorious Unit Citation (Regimental)*
  • 2005 – Drill Competition (Regimental)
  • 2005 – National Encampment
  • 2005 – Regimental Encampment*
  • 2005 – Battalion Encampment*
  • 2002 – Veterans Appreciation*
  • 2002 – Battalion Encampment*
  • 2001 – Battalion Encampment*


*Streamer no longer awarded