Our youth development programs are designed to provide 6th-12th grade students with a space to develop positive relationships, leadership skills, and discover their passions. Our approach is youth are the problem-solvers, NOT problems to be solved. We serve at least 200 youth annually, through our Middle School Cohort, High School Cohort, and Study Break on Us. We invite all youth to sign up to participate in our programs that are of interest to them.
Middle School Cohort
6th-8th grade students participate in quarterly enrichments activities that helps them develop in 6 different capacities: self-awareness, social awareness, personal responsibility, self management, goal-directed behavior, and relationship skills. Youth are able to engage in conversations about identity (self-identity, gender identity, etc.), empathy, stereotypes, and being culturally sensitive through discussions and activities, as well as identify the qualities of healthy friendships and demonstrate ways to be a good friend. Click Here to Learn More
High School Cohort
9th-12th grade students are given a hands-on experience in identifying community and social issues, and creating action plans. Students play a role in organizing community service projects, initiatives, and events. Participants who participate in this cohort increase their awareness of community issues, leadership skills, have a greater sense of belonging, and understanding of their individuated identity and values. Click Here to Learn More
Study Break on Us
Study Break on Us, held twice a month, provides 6th-12th grade students with FREE opportunities and experiences to take a break from academics to learn new skills and explore their interests in the form of art, mental well-being, fitness, and culinary while engaging with their peers. Click Here to Learn More
MLK Day of Service
Every January we host MLK Day of Service Projects that invites the community to make lunches for South Suburban PADS and tie blankets for Project Kennedy, that benefit children battling cancer. Click Here to Learn More
Homewood-Flossmoor Juneteenth Festival
The Homewood-Flossmoor (HF) Juneteenth Festival is a celebration of African American culture as expressed through food, music, dance, and arts. Our mission is to provide an environment that celebrates and showcases the uniqueness, power, and endurance of African Americans. Click Here to Learn More
Back to School Bash
Every July we provide students in our local communities with a new backpack filled with school supplies. Our mission is to bring awareness to the importance of education, community support, and celebrate the start of the school year. In addition to free school supplies, families get to enjoy a day of fun and favors like, music, jumpy houses, popcorn, snow cones, and face painting.
We Scare Hunger Trail
Every October, we raise awareness for hunger by organizing a haunted house, facilitated by our cohorts, for members of the community to experience by donating non-perishable food items as their admission to benefit Respond Now.
Every holiday season, You Matter 2 steps up for local families right here in the Chicago Southland by shopping for families who may be experience hardships. We spread holiday joy by purchasing almost everything on their Christmas wishlists.