Academic Success Programs
These programs help youth create aspirations for the future, providing opportunities for career exploration and educational enhancement.
This fun and exciting program, sponsored by Bank of America and Gap Foundation, prepares teens for the world of careers and work. Through CareerLaunch, Club teens 13-18 years old embark on a journey to explore possible vocations, make sound educational decisions and find success in the world of work. Club staff or volunteers help teens build their job-search skills and job readiness by using the CareerLaunch Facilitator Guide and working with teens individually or in small groups.
Junior Staff is a small-group program that is both practical and user friendly. It assists Club members ages 13 to 18 in exploring a career in youth or human services, particularly Boys & Girls Club work. Young people prepare for future roles as human services professionals by participating in career development activities, discovering the importance of community service, building customer service skills and completing a Club apprenticeship
Money Matters promotes financial responsibility and independence among Club members ages 13 to 18. Participants learn how to manage a checking account, create a budget, save and invest, start small businesses and pay for college. A recent evaluation of 1,600 teens from more than 100 Boys & Girls Clubs demonstrated the Money Matters program helped them become smarter about money. Youth showed improvement on 94% of survey questions asked before and after taking the program in their Club.
Power Hour: Making Minutes Count provides Club professionals with the strategies, activities, resources and information to create an engaging homework help and tutoring program that encourages Club members at every age to become self-directed learners. The Power Hour materials provide practical tips and best practices for recognition and incentives, behavior management, volunteer recruitment and training, collaboration with other organizations and use of technology and the Internet.
Summer Brain Gain is a fun, educational program that aims to prevent summer learning loss and keep kids on track for the coming school year. Supported by Disney and Old Navy, the program is comprised of 17 one-week modules with themed activities for elementary school, middle school and high school students. Each module takes a project-based learning approach; youth engage in a process of learning through discovery, creative expression, group work and a final project or production.
Character & Leadership Programs
Helping youth become responsible, caring citizens and acquire skills for participating in the democratic process is the main thrust of these programs. They also develop leadership skills and provide opportunities for planning, decision-making, contributing to Club and community and celebrating our national heritage.
Keystoning is the Boys & Girls Club Movement’s ultimate teen program. This unique leadership development experience provides opportunities for young people ages 14 to 18. Youth participate, both in and out of the Club, in activities in three focus areas: academic success, career preparation and community service. With the guidance of an adult advisor, Keystone Clubs aim to have a positive impact on members, the Club and community.
Torch Clubs are chartered, small-group leadership and service clubs for boys and girls ages 11 to 13. A Torch Club is a powerful vehicle through which Club staff can help meet the special character development needs of younger adolescents at a critical stage in their life.
Since 1947, Youth of the Year has been Boys & Girls Clubs of America’s premier recognition program, celebrating the extraordinary achievements of Club members. Each year, one exceptional Club member is selected to be the National Youth of the Year. The National Youth of the Year serves as both an exemplary ambassador for Boys& Girls Club youth and as a strong voice for all of our nation’s young people.
These initiatives develop young people’s capacity to engage in positive behaviors that nurture their own well-being, set personal goals and live successfully as self-sufficient adults. In addition, fitness programs provide for a positive use of leisure time, reduction of stress, appreciation for the environment and social and interpersonal skills.
Designed to incorporate healthy living and active learning in every part of the Club experience, Healthy Habits emphasizes good nutrition, regular physical activity and improving overall well-being. The program, for ages 6 to 15, is the Mind component of Triple Play: A Game Plan for the Mind, Body and Soul.
Passport to Manhood promotes and teaches responsibility in Club boys ages 11 to 14. Passport to Manhood consists of 14 sessions, each concentrating on a specific aspect of character and manhood through highly interactive activities. Each Club participant receives his own “passport” to underscore the notion that he is on a personal journey of maturation and growth.
An outgrowth of the popular and effective SMART Moves program, SMART Girls is a health, fitness, prevention/education and self-esteem enhancement program for girls ages 8 to 17. Encouraging young women to have healthy attitudes and lifestyles, SMART Girls helps them reach their full potential. Through dynamic sessions, group activities, field trips and mentoring opportunities with adult women, Club girls enjoy the opportunity to build skills for eating right, staying physically fit, getting good health care, and developing positive relationships.
The SMART Moves (Skills Mastery and Resistance Training) prevention/education program addresses problems such as drug and alcohol use and premature sexual activity. The program uses a team approach involving Club staff, peer leaders, parents and community representatives. More than simply emphasizing a “Say No” message, the program teaches young people ages 6 to 15 how to say no by involving them in discussion and role-playing, practicing resistance and refusal skills, developing assertiveness, strengthening decision-making skills and analyzing media and peer influence.
Triple Play, BGCA’s first comprehensive health and wellness program, developed in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, strives to improve the overall health of Club members ages 6-18 by increasing their daily physical activity, teaching them good nutrition and helping them develop healthy relationships.
The Mind component encourages young people to eat smart through the Healthy Habits program, which covers the power of choice, calories, vitamins and minerals, the food pyramid and appropriate portion size. The Body component boosts Clubs’ traditional physical activities to a higher level by providing sports and fitness activities for all youth. Body programs include six Daily Fitness Challenges; teen Sports Clubs focused on leadership development, service and careers in athletics; and Triple Play Games Tournaments, inter-Club sectional tournaments that involve multiple team sports. The Soul component helps build positive relationships and cooperation among young people.