Become A Young Marine
Having fun while learning
It is the key ingredient! Young Marines is open to all youths ages 8 through 18 or completion of high school, whichever comes last. Membership requirements are - youth must be in good standing in school and no criminal history. Since the Young Marines’ beginnings in 1959, with one unit and a handful of boys, the organization has grown to include boys and girls with units throughout the country and overseas
Experience Outstanding Opportunities
The Young Marines program offers its participants a variety of experiences, from encountering the outdoors in a variety of challenging ways, to meeting notable veterans and political figures, to participating in solemn ceremonies on days of remembrance, such as Memorial Day, Veterans Day and in recent years, commemoration ceremonies honoring veterans of Pearl Harbor. Along the way, Young Marines learn the values of discipline and teamwork, the fundamentals of land navigation, rank structure, and much more, such as self-respect and respect for others.
Become A Volunteer
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.
If you are interested in becoming a Young Marine adult volunteer, Find a Unit
near you by entering the zip code in the community you live in and click on the unit(s) in your area. Contact the Unit Commander listed for more information about that unit and their recruiting schedule. Once you have decided to become an Adult Volunteer, simply fill out the Volunteer Adult Application, submit that application to the Unit Commander who will then endorse the application and send it to Young Marines National Headquarters in Washington, D.C. for approval. All adult volunteers are screened by the National Headquarters based on recommendations and a background investigation performed by National Center for Safety Initiatives (NCSI).
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What is the Young Marines?
The Young Marines is a not-for-profit 501(c)3 youth education and service program for boys and girls ages 8 through high school. Young Marines are organized into local units located in nearly every state in the United States.
Q: Is the Young Marines similar to other community-based programs?
A: Yes. Young Marines units are community-based programs run by dedicated adult volunteers in over 300 communities across the United States, and overseas. Young Marine units are similar in nature to Boy/Girl Scout councils or Camp Fire chapters where the units meet once or twice a week.
Q: How many Young Marine units are there?
A: There are over 230 Young Marines units nationwide, including international units in Okinawa, Japan. To find the unit nearest you, visit our Unit Locator link above.
Q: Who runs the local Young Marines units?
A: Each Young Marines unit is a independent community-based program lead by registered 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 affect on them. They volunteer their time and make every effort to pass positive values on to those under their charge before other destructive influences take root. New volunteers are always welcome to apply, regardless of whether or not they have a background in the Armed Forces.
Q: How can my child participate in the Young Marines?
A: To learn more about enrollment dates, unit dues, unit activities, meeting times/locations, etc., contact the unit nearest you directly. To find the unit nearest you, click the Unit Locator link above. The contact person/volunteer at that unit can let you know more about their local unit and tell you more about how your child can participate.
Q: How much does it cost to join the Young Marines?
A: The cost varies from unit to unit depending on the location and needs. Using the Unit Locator link above you can contact the unit closest to you and inquire as to the costs.
Q: I'm interested in volunteering with the Young Marines. Do I have to be in the military?
A: While there must be at least one Marine in good standing – Former, retired, reserve or active duty who serves as the Unit Commander, volunteers are always welcome to apply, regardless of whether or not they have a background in the Armed Forces.
Q: I would like to volunteer but there is no unit in my area. How do I get involved?
A: If you would like to volunteer but after visiting our unit locator, you have determined that there is no unit in your area, you may consider starting a new Young Marine unit. Learn more about starting a new unit by clicking on the Start a Unit link in the navigation above.
Q: Can I donate to the Young Marines?
A: You can help us in our effort of strengthening the lives of America's youth by making a donation through our secure server. It's fast and easy and when we receive your donation, we will send you an acknowledgement email for tax purposes. Click on the Donate link above.
Q: Can I donate to a local unit?
A: If you are interested in supporting a Young Marines unit in your community, please contact the unit directly. You can find your nearest unit by clicking on the Unit Locator link above.
Q: Is the Young Marines a resident program?
A: No. The youths do NOT attend a "military-style" resident program. This is not a program where you send your children for an extended period. On average, units meet once or twice per week year round.