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Knowledge is a ticket out of poverty Image

Knowledge is a ticket out of poverty

Youth Programs

Our ministry is motivated by love of God. Our mission is to Embrace, Empower and Equip the young people of the Kalamazoo to succeed in relationships and life.  We seek to do this by providing a safe environment for life-changing spiritual, educational and wellness experiences in the Vine-Edison neighborhood. 

Contact our Youth Director, Joseph Burrell at 269-743-0838 or joseph_burrel@usc.salvationarmy.org for more information.

How we help empower youth

Character Building

Character Building is a Christian Scouting Program for children grades 1-12 where they learn valuable life skills such as woodworking, cooking, sports, and technology. Students earn badges in each area as they learn new things and make lasting friendships. Character Building students are eligible to attend summer camp at Little Pine Island in Comstock Park, MI. 

The program takes place Tuesday nights from 5:45 to 7:30pm throughout the school year.  Dinner is provided. Transportation can be provided if needed.  To register or ask questions, contact Joseph Burrel at 269-743-0838 or email joseph_burrel@usc.salvationarmy.org.

After School Programs

The Community Center is open Monday-Friday from 3-6pm for local youth (6 - 17 years old) to work on homework, play basketball and other games, receive positive mentoring and use our computer lab.  

We also offer Mission:Literacy and a Digital Learning Program to provide additional educational opportunities for area youth.  Mission:Literacy focuses on improving reading skills among students in 1st-5th grade.  The Digital Learning Program offers several courses, from financial literacy to African American History all available in a web-based classroom format.  Digital Learning is geared for students age 8 and older. 

Adult volunteers are needed to offer guidance and supervision during these programs.  Please click here to apply. 

KidZone

KidZone is a free summer day camp program for local children grades K-6. The camp runs Monday through Friday from 9am-12pm throughout the summer. Breakfast and lunch are served daily as well as fun activities and lessons each day.  For more information or to register your child, please call 269-344-6119. 

Summer Drop In Hours are available from 1-3pm for youth up to age 16.  The Community Center and Gym will be open at this time. 

Volunteers are needed to keep this program free and safe for the community.  Click Here to apply! 

Summer Camp

For many kids, summer camp is the first time they will see the world outside of their neighborhood. Each year, Little Pine Island Camp welcomes hundreds of children from low-income families to enjoy fresh air, exercise and new friendships through our annual summer program. This experience is more than just a few days away from home. Here, children learn new skills and self-reliance. Trained counselors who understand their emotional needs and problems help them mature and grow. Camp activities include learning to swim, scouting, arts and crafts, music development, and sports.

Other Ways We Meet Need