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& Leadership

Our kids and teens are not only Club members, they are the future leaders of the Des Moines community. Our Character & Leadership programs challenge our youth to be community-minded and inspire them by demonstrating how they can affect change when they work together.

Youth of the Year

Youth of the Year is Boys & Girls Clubs of America’s premier recognition program. It is our signature effort and scholarship competition to foster a new generation of leaders, fully prepared to live and lead in a diverse, global, and integrated world economy.

Torch Club

Torch Clubs are chartered, small-group leadership and service clubs for boys and girls 11 to 13 years old. A Torch Club is a powerful vehicle that helps Club staff meet the special character development needs of younger adolescents at a critical stage in their lives.

Junior Staff

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.


Our youth have opportunities to connect with community professionals for guidance and advice in a variety of fields to support their development.


SMART Girls provides health, prevention education, and self-esteem enhancement for girls 8 to 17 years old.

Passport to Manhood

Passport to Manhood teaches responsibility to boys ages 11 to 14 with sessions that focus on a specific aspect of character and manhood through highly interactive activities.


We are on a mission to inspire and enable all young people, especially those who need us most, to reach their full potential as productive, caring, responsible citizens.

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