Boys & Girls Clubs of America

Every child deserves a great future. For the first time in history, however, today's generation is estimated to be worse off than their parents. Consider these alarming facts of why America's kids are in crisis:

  • 1 in 5 high school students fails to graduate on time.
  • 1 in 5 youth in America lives in poverty.
  • 3 out of 10 kids are obese or overweight.

This is why Boys & Girls Clubs of America, whose more than 4,100 Clubs serve nearly 4 million kids, launched the Great Futures Campaign: the Campaign for America's kids. The Great Futures Campaign is an unprecedented initiative to mobilize our nation and ensure that America's youth, especially those who need us most, graduate from high school on time with a plan for the future; demonstrate good character and citizenship; and live a healthy lifestyle.

As part of BGCA's Great Futures Campaign, each Great Think is an executive roundtable discussion on critical issues facing kids today—from STEM to safety. Designed to facilitate public-private collaborations that ensure great futures for America's youth, the Great Think series' purpose is three-fold:

  • Convene key influencers and stakeholders to develop action plans that address critical issues
  • Develop strategic plans and programming to be implemented in more than 4,100 Boys & Girls Clubs across the country
  • Enable change through activism and advocacy among partners, supporters and Club alumni to benefit the millions of youth served by Boys & Girls Clubs

Every day, in every Club, we're changing lives. Together, with key partners, we will change America's future.

The Great Think series convenes key influencers to examine critical issues facing kids today, specifically the increasing challenges facing military families; providing STEM educational opportunities to underserved youth; reversing the childhood obesity epidemic; and strengthening child protection and safety practices nationwide.

Teen Great Think Header

Boys & Girls Clubs of America's Teen Great Think focused on identifying strategies to empower teens and help discover pathways to their success. With the help of partners like the Taco Bell Foundation for Teens, we aim to help 1.4 million Club teens stay on track to graduate by 2018.

The Teen Great Think convened America's teens, thought leaders, Club executives and key stakeholders from across sectors to help shape our national teen advocacy and empowerment campaign to launch in 2016.

More information coming soon!

Health and Wellness Great Think Header

Our vision for the future is to empower Clubs with the effective strategies and resources needed to become centers of health and wellness in their communities, fostering the development of resilient kids, teens and families committed to living a healthy and balanced lifestyle. At BGCA’s Health & Wellness Great Think, we heard from renowned industry experts about proven and innovative practices in the field that are addressing critical health issues facing kids and teens in America today. We learned that youth development organizations need to adopt a comprehensive approach to health and wellness that serves the whole being, including physical and nutritional health, mental and emotional wellbeing, health education, and prevention.

As a convening of thought leaders from across sectors, participants discussed and formulated policy recommendations, exchanged best practices and lent insights into the design of a culture of wellness for Clubs to ensure more kids and teens are empowered to make healthy choices for a better life.

Find out more about the outcomes from BGCA's Health & Wellness Great Think by clicking here.

Youth Safety Great Think Header

Boys & Girls Clubs of America's Youth Safety Great Think convened key influencers and stakeholders to examine one of the most critical issues affecting America's young people. The September 2014 event convened over 80 experts from federal agencies, associations, corporations and national nonprofits, as well as local and national Club leaders. It marked the start of a national dialogue around the critical issue of keeping young people safe in out-of-school time settings.

Click here to learn more.

STEM Great Think Header

Thought leaders representing higher education, government, corporations and nonprofit organizations participated in the STEM Great Think, the first national thought leadership forum to combine innovation and creativity with STEM programming in the out-of-school time (OST) environment. The purpose of the STEM Great Think was to develop a plan for establishing strategic partnerships that will advance STEM education in the OST space, which will engage more underrepresented youth in these disciplines and set them on the path to successful careers.

Click here to learn more and view photos from this discussion.

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As the series' inaugural event, the Military Great Think was our nation's first convening of military experts from academia, business, government, media and the nonprofit sector to address the significant challenges facing military youth.

Click here to learn more and view photos from this discussion.

Upcoming Events

GreatThink Teen

Washington, DC
Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Calendar of Events

Military Great Think
Arlington, VA
September 13, 2013

STEM Great Think
Redwood City, CA
May 2, 2014

Youth Safety Great Think
The Ritz Carlton
Washington, D.C.
September 16, 2014

Teen Great Think
Chicago, IL
May 13, 2015

Health & Wellness Great Think
Washington, DC
September 30, 2015

Indian Country Great Think
Washington, DC
July 12, 2016



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