BGC London Youth ABCs (Ability to Bring Change!)

Organization Sponsor: Boys and Girls Club of London


Program Description

 Boys and Girls Club of London is launching Youth ABCs (Ability to Bring Change!) to help local youth develop knowledge, leadership skills and inspiration to make positive changes in their lives. Youth ABCs includes education on the benefits of physical activity and healthy eating and is designed to encourage youth to be more actively, positively engaged in their Club, neighbourhood and community.

Topics covered in the Youth ABCs curriculum include:

  • The benefits and importance of physical activity and healthy eating;
  • Canadian Physical Activity Guidelines and Canada's Food Guide ;
  • Improving health and well-being while developing leadership skills;
  • Setting goals to achieve personal dreams;
  • Actions to promote respect, belonging and inclusion;
  • Working together to enhance personal health and promote healthier living in Clubs and communities;
  • Strength-based community development;
  • Positive Change through Public Policy

“This is blended through everything we do, physical activity, healthy eating, leadership skills, and this will focus one program on all of that,” Chris Harvey CEO of BGCLondon, said. “More and more we are trying to engage youth. There are issues we are always trying to help with, so any time we have the opportunity to bring them into our facility, and work with them, the great thing is they experience something maybe they haven’t had the chance to before.”

Program Approximate Cost: 

$100,000 province wide.

Funding Sources: 

  The initiative is made possible Ontario-wide through a $100,000 grant from The Coca-Cola Foundation.

Strategies For Sustainability: 

Boys and Girls Clubs of Canada is a leading charitable organization providing after school programs that support the physical, educational and social development of children, youth and their families each year. Boys and Girls Clubs operate in 650 locations across Canada and have been helping young Canadians to discover, develop and achieve their potential for over 110 years

Impact Of Program: 

Coca-Cola Canada is a long-time supporter of Boys and Girls Clubs of Canada and this new program is expected to benefit more than 500 London-area youth over the next year.Youth ABCs has had widespread impact, with youth participants reporting strengthened leadership and communication skills, as well as confidence to create positive community change, among other new skills.

Evaluation Tools: 

Chris Harvey, CEO of Boys and Girls Club of London, said Youth ABCs is a “fantastic program” that fits well with everything the organization promotes on a daily basis. However, it allows the club to engage youth in perhaps a different way.

Key Elements Towards Success: 

"Boys and Girls Club of London is thrilled to launch the Youth ABCs initiative in order to give youth opportunities to grow into strong leaders, have a positive impact on their peers and strengthen our community." - Chris Harvey, CEO, Boys and Girls Club of London

Challenges To Meet Them: 

“Youth see their community differently and have great ideas about solving those issues,” Harvey said. “There is more buy-in when the youth themselves are involved in the process.”

Length and Stage of Project: 

Since the program’s launch in 2009 with support from the Ontario Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport and Ontario Trillium Foundation.

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