Academic Success Programs
DIY STEM is a hands-on, activity-based STEM curriculum, which connects youth to science themes they encounter regularly.
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.
My.Future is a mobile-friendly social platform with program activities in areas such as STEM, leadership and the arts.
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 of every age to become self-directed learners.
Summer Brain Gain
Summer Brain Gain is comprised of one-week modules with fun, themed activities for elementary school, middle school and high school students that are aligned with common core anchor standards. In addition, Summer Brain Gain: Read!, a literacy program, complements the larger Summer Brain Gain curriculum.
In partnership with Northwestern University’s Science and Society Department and Dr. Michael Kennedy, True Value and Pedersen-McCormick Clubs offer twice-weekly Science Club (middle and high school) and Junior Science Club (elementary) programming. This program is the only one of its kind in the country and is nationally recognized. Northwestern graduate students volunteer with the program for at least one year committing to weekly sessions with two youth each. This low mentor-mentee ratio allows for a high caliber of content and in-depth study.
Summer camps is a six- to eight-week program that gives children a safe place to go during the summer months. For many families, summer camp can be out of reach due to high costs. BGCC offers an affordable camp option (even making it free to families that can’t afford the reduced cost) that’s not only fun, but offers educational activities and adventures to expand BGCC members’ horizons. Additionally, the kids that seek out the Club programs are those at greatest risk to suffer from summer learning loss. Studies show that most low-income youth lose about two months of grade-level equivalency in mathematical computation and reading skills over the summer months. BGCC’s summer programs combat that learning loss by engaging youth in learning through discovery, creative expression and collaborative group work.
Tech Girls Rock!
Since 2011, CA Technologies has partnered with BGCA to deliver hands-on technology workshops for tween and teen girls to spark their interest in STEM careers.
Healthy Lifestyles Programs
ALL STARS engages Club members 6-18 in football, basketball, cheerleading and dancing.
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.
SMART Girls provides health, fitness, prevention/education and self-esteem enhancement for girls ages 8 to 17.
Triple Play: A Game Plan for Mind, Body, and Soul
Triple Play is a comprehensive health and wellness program. It strives to improve the overall health of Club members ages 6-18 by increasing daily physical activity, teaching them about good nutrition and helping them develop healthy relationships.
Cooking Classes | Les Dames d’Escoffier
The program features virtual cooking lessons from culinary professionals at Les Dames d’Escoffier (LDEI). With in-person, hands-on lessons at the Pedersen-McCormick Club, LDEI also offers a series of videos teaching all Virtual Club members cooking skills and recipes for easy, healthy snacks.
Select Clubs offer swimming classes and a swim team to all members. The staff teaches classes from basic swimming to water safety and stroke mechanics. BGCC is proud to offer these opportunities to youth so that they may incorporate swimming into their healthy lifestyles and model lifelong safe behaviors in and around bodies of water.
The games room is the heart of every Club. This central, welcoming space is a program area where all youth can have fun and play together. Teen Club members host games tournaments practicing good sportsmanship and cooperation, and younger members modify games such as ping pong, billiards, and bumper pool to fit their interests and abilities.
Open gym is also key to the success of BGCC’s Clubs. When not in use for organized team sports and activities, open gym is a time for youth to be creative and play together no matter their skill level. The gym is especially vital as few Clubs have outdoor recreation space and many schools do not regularly offer gym class or sports opportunities.
Character & Leadership Programs
Employment Program | Great Opportunities (GO) Program
BGCC offers an Employment Program for qualifying teen members. The goal of the program is to provide workforce development services to teens, including job readiness training, career development, internships, drop-out prevention services, and leadership development. Throughout the past 10 years, BGCC has placed more than 700 teen members in employment, post-secondary education, internships, and training opportunities through this program.
These Clubs are chartered, small-group leadership and service clubs for boys and girls ages 11 to 18. They are a powerful vehicle that helps Club staff meet the special character development needs of younger adolescents at a critical stage in their life.
Youth of the Year
The Youth of the Year Award is Boys & Girls Clubs of Chicago’s highest local honor, rewarding leadership, service and academic standing. Click here to view last year's Youth of the Year event.