Providing year-round services to Des Moines area youth.
Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Iowa is one of the largest and most comprehensive youth development organizations in the Des Moines metro. We provide a full schedule of diversified activities for our members. Our programs provide low- or no-cost opportunities for youth to participate in fun and educationally enriching activities in three key program areas: Academic Success, Character & Leadership, and Healthy Lifestyles.
Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Iowa’s Academic Success programs offer the perfect solution for helping kids overcome achievement and opportunity gaps. By working closely in partnership with Des Moines Public Schools, our dedicated Club staff provide kids and teens with the resources they need to succeed in school and beyond.
We don’t just help kids get good grades. We help them get inspired and feel empowered to build a better future for themselves. Our programs provide Club members with the knowledge and skills they need to graduate from high school on time, equipped with the technical skills, tools, and resources to pursue their interests and prepare them for college, trade school, and employment.
PROGRAMS WITH IMPACT
Each of our Clubs is equipped with resources that offer daily activities and programs designed to develop members’ skills in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) subjects.
Our arts programs help Club members develop confidence, self-expression, and creativity, multicultural appreciation, and skills in crafts and visual, performing, and literary arts.
ACADEMIC SUPPORT & HOMEWORK ASSISTANCE
Each day after school, our professional staff and dedicated volunteers help Club members become more successful in school by providing them with the tools and strategies to increase the academic achievement of students and encourage members to become self-directed leaders.
EDUCATION & CAREER DEVELOPMENT
BGCCI offers teens the chance to serve as leaders throughout the Club, build life skills, and apply academic skills in a real-world context, through mentorship opportunities that move them toward personal development and great futures.
CHARACTER & 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. Perhaps, most importantly, we empower young people to support and influence their community, sustain meaningful relationships, develop a positive self-image, participate in the democratic process, and respect their own and others’ cultural identities.
PROGRAMS WITH IMPACT
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 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 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.
At Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Iowa, we want to teach kids and teens how to live healthier lives. Good health requires practice. It means not only having a place to go where you get the chance to run, jump, kick, throw, and high-five; it also means eating right and having the knowledge and confidence necessary to choose wisely. Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Iowa’s Healthy Lifestyles programming helps young people learn that informed decisions about health and social issues can mean the difference between a life without options and a life filled with hope.
PROGRAMS WITH IMPACT
DAILY MEALS & HEALTHY SNACKS
Thanks to key community partners, we provide healthy snacks, balanced meals, and supplementary food items for our kids and families.
TRIPLE PLAY SPORTS
Through the Triple Play experience, local Boys & Girls Clubs challenge members to become healthy and active by learning new ways to manage stress, improve their physical fitness through regular physical activity, and competitive sports leagues, building both their positive social skills and character.
Club members have the opportunity to engage in hands-on, comprehensive activities that teach them how to cook and learn lifelong skills that impact their health in positive ways. Members practice making a healthy snack and meal options together and taste the results.
21ST CENTURY COMMUNITY LEARNING CENTERS
21st Century Community Learning Centers funded entirely new summer programs at both Callanan and Harding Middle Schools in 2019. Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Iowa provided high-quality programming aimed at promoting life skills, academic success, community engagement, and a healthy mind and body. Program attendees received two full meals and a snack every open day, as well as, additional foods and goods sent or delivered to their homes, at no cost to the families.
Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Iowa made the decision to continue supporting families from these two communities by extending services at the Gregory & Suzie Glazer Burt Club, located on the Drake University Campus, into the academic school year. As a result of our commitment to these youth beyond the summer months, 86% met their growth target in reading and 64% met their growth target in math, as evidenced by their MAP scores in the first semester alone.
Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Iowa has graciously accepted a second award from 21st Century Community Learning Centers to serve high school students attending East High School and Flex Academy at our E.T. Meredith Jr. Club, all year-round. Check back for a report on the progress of this new program.