Youth of the Year

BGCCI's Youth of the Year 

What is Youth of the Year? 
The Boys & Girls Club Youth of the Year program honors the nation’s most awe-inspiring young people on their path to great futures and encourages all kids to lead, succeed and inspire. This prestigious scholarship competition requires teens to compose essays and a speech detailing their Club experience, personal brand, and plan for the future. Youth then present their work in front of community judges for the chance to win scholarship dollars to fund their future higher education. Younger Club members are able to compete as Junior Youth of the Year contestants to prepare for future participation in the Senior division. 

To honor our incredible young people, Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Iowa hosts an annual free dinner event and presentation of the scholarship competition. We use this evening to celebrate our youth and crown the official BGCCI Youth of the Year. 

Who is the Event For?
BGCCI's Youth of the Year celebration is open to all supporters of our youth! This free dinner event is the perfect way to understand the impact of the Boys & Girls Club mission and become inspired by our incredible young people. Come with friends, make it a date night, or bring the whole family for a fun night in celebration of some incredible kids and their great futures! 

How Do Guests Attend BGCCI's 2018 Youth of the Year Celebration? 
No tickets are necessary, but to attend Youth of the Year 2018, guests must RSVP to Elaine Collet at or 515-262-5695 by January 26th. We look forward to seeing you there!

KaVon's Youth of the Year Journey 

2018 Youth of the Year Event Details

2017 Youth of the Year
KaVon McGowen

As both the 2016 and 2017 Youth of the Year for Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Iowa, 17-year old KaVon is a true example of an extraordinary young man recognized by Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA) for his leadership, service, academic excellence and dedication to live a healthy lifestyle.

KaVon, a senior at Lincoln High School, has been a member of the Boys & Girls Clubs for nine years and is one of the Club’s biggest advocates, boasting its positive impact on his social development and leadership skills. He recalls how the staff, fellow Club members, and activities helped him become less shy and develop into the charismatic and selfless leader he is today.

"Club is a place where kids can enrich their mind and body,” said KaVon. "The most important thing about Club is that no matter the odds, they are always in your corner. To know that they genuinely care about me and everyone else is more than I could ever ask for.”
The Boys & Girls Club staff says Kavon, who now serves in a volunteer capacity as a junior staff member, is an invaluable presence at Club.

"I love to lead and inspire kids so that they can be the absolute best they can,” said KaVon. "Seeing a kid understand a tough concept, finally make a basket in a real basketball game, or just finish their homework – that’s what keeps me going; kids meeting their goals and knowing I could help make that possible.”

During his Youth of the Year journey, KaVon shared his plans of attending Iowa State University to become a genetic engineer with the hope of helping to feed more people around the world. KaVon’s mission is to also open more Boys & Girls Clubs across the nation and the world so that more young people can benefit from Club the way he did.
In the spring, KaVon won the Iowa State Youth of the Year Competition, and moved on to the Midwest Regional Competition where he was named on of three finalists. After presenting his speech in front of hundreds, he was awarded additional scholarship dollars to finance his education at Iowa State University and begin his great future! 
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