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Kids Deserve Kindness Image

Kids Deserve Kindness

Our main charge is to ensure that all are met with understanding and love. At the core of all that we do, fighting for our youth is a primary driver to share God's grace. 

The Salvation Army is renowned for the holistic care approach incorporated into everything we do. Providing a safe place to play and a warm meal is just the start. We also provide character-building programs, summer camp, sports activities, after school programs, back-to-school drives and mentorship. The youth of today will be equipped and empowered for life, tomorrow.

Children's & Youth Programs

2021 SUMMER DAY CAMP - Click here for more information! 

We are excited to offer a variety of Youth programs for children and youth of all ages. 
Programs include Character Building, Youth Music and Arts and Summer Camp

Children and youth in these programs build valuable skills that they will use throughout
their lives. Our programs focus on positive youth activities and character building. The goal
of the programs are to build positive social and communication habits, decision making and
life skills, and build character and leadership skills with Christian values. 

Programs are held at The Salvation Army Community Center, 1239 Barlow St., Traverse City. Participants must be registered before starting the programs. For more information please call Susie Afton, Youth Ministries Coordinator (231) 946-4644 ext 309.

Programs include: 
Tuesday Night Youth Programs - Character building and music
Family Dinner and Movie Night 
The Squad Teen Program
Christian Education (Sunday) - Sunday School, Junior Worship and Junior Soldiers and Corps Cadet programs  
Download a brochure >>

Download a Youth Night Character Building and Music and Arts program registration and permission waiver form >>

Character Building & Music (Tuesdays)

Youth Night challenges and nurtures boys and girls of all ages 1st grade thru high school by teaching them to express their value and ambitions toward spiritual, mental, physical and social well-being, and helps them understand their potential as individuals. 
Free transportation is available from many local schools. 

September 15 through October 27, resuming on January.

3:00 - 3:55 Gym (homework)
4:00 - 4:30 Dinner (provided)
4:35 - 5:40 Character building programs: Sunbeams(Girls K-5th grade) Explorers (Boys 1st-5th grade) Girl Guards (Girls 6th-12th grade) and Rangers (Boys 6th-12th grade))
5:50 - 6:35 Music and Arts

Our Character Building youth programs challenge and nurture boys and girls by teaching them to express their value and ambitions toward spiritual, mental, physical and social well-being, and helps them understand their potential as individuals. 

Sunbeams are for girls, 1st - 5th grades. The Sunbeam program focuses on helping girls learn about themselves and their world. They do this through programs centered around education, fellowship and worship.
Sunbeam pledge: I promise that I will try to love God, to be obedient, to be loving and kind to all and to be true to the
Sunbeam Motto: "Do right!

Explorers are for boys 1st - 5th grade. The Explorer program focuses on working with others, providing service within the community, learning about other cultures, meeting new people, and
building friendships. 

Explorers Pledge: I promise to explore God's Word and God's world to find ways to serve Him and help others; to develop and guard good habits so that I will grow as God desires; and to adventure into the world with the "good news" of Jesus Christ.
Explorer Motto: "Adventure With Christ"

Girls Guards are for middle and high school girls. The Girl Guards program is focused on addressing their spiritual, physical, mental and social needs. Skill-development, personal growth and community service opportunities expand as girls learn to work together and independently in various environments. They are also encouraged to think seriously about career and life-style choices as they move into adulthood, based on what they've learned as a Girl Guard.
Girl Guard Aim: I understand that as a Girl Guard I will grow spiritually by increasing my knowledge of God through Bible study and prayer. I will grow mentally by being honest in my thoughts and actions and by developing the mind and talent God has given me. I will grow physically by protecting myself from all harmful substances and habits by developing a healthy body. I will grow socially by being respectful, friendly, of service to others and loyal to my country.

Rangers are for boy's 6th - 12th grade. The Ranger program focuses on working with others, providing service within the community, learning about other cultures, meeting new people, and building friendships.

Transportation is available from many local schools to the Traverse City Community Center at 1239 Barlow Street (although not guaranteed). 


From The Salvation Armys earliest days, music and the arts have played an important part of our ministry. 
Opportunities are available to develop and express their musical and artistic skills to bring glory and honor
to God.

  • Junior Band*
  • Singing Company
  • Guitar Ensemble*
  • Ukulele

*New students must pass a proficiency test and show an interest to learn the basics of music theory in order to check out a brass instrument or guitar owned by The Salvation Army.

Download a Youth Night Character Building and Music and Arts program registration and permission waiver form >>  

Family Dinner and Movie Night

We invite you and your family to join us for a simple dinner around the table. Shortly after dinner is served we will have a family friendly movie. There will be free popcorn and candy for sale to support Youth Programs. The will take place the 4th Friday of every month.

The Squad

The Squad is a youth group for students 6th-12th grade. It is a time to hang out in a safe Christ centered environment connecting with peers and leaders. The Salvation Army "The Squad" youth group will be held the 1st, 2nd and 3rd Friday from 6:00-8:00 PM. We will be offering several activities for teens in The Squad to be involved with such as, bowling, archery (when this becomes available), movie nights, open gym, swimming, games and other activities. Some of these events could also be a part of family night as well. There will be a cost for some of these events such as swimming, archery and bowling. Most things that have a cost to it that takes us outside of the building will come at a minimal cost.

If you are interested in having your child participate, we will need you to fill out a participation form and also go over a form with your child about behavior and what we expect your child to adhere to while they are in our care. For participation form please call (231) 946-4644, x.309.

Christian Education (Sundays)

The Salvation Army Christian education programs focus on the salvation and nurturing of young people and adults to the honor and glory of God as well as building relationships within the body of Christ. This objective is achieved through the spiritual disciplines of scripture study and memorization, prayer and accountable relationships.

Sunday School   -  Sunday   9:30-10:45 AM  (Cancelled at this time due to COVID-19
(Children and adults welcome) 

Click here to securely make a donation to support youth programs.

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