Character & Leadership Development


We believe it is our responsibility to prepare Indy youth to be future leaders in their communities. Our Character & Leadership Development programs empower youth to support and influence their Clubs and communities, create and keep meaningful relationships of all kinds, develop a positive self-image and good character and respect their own and others’ cultural identities.

Our results:

  • Club kids give back: Nearly half of our Club members participate in some type of service project each year.
  • Our Clubs are building leaders: 77% of participants report having been a leader at the Club.
  • We’re helping Club teens envision a positive future: 80% of teens report learning about different careers, and 81% report that they have learned about college at the Club.
Picture12Youth for Unity

Youth for Unity provides youth and parents with tools to help them better understand diversity and how to combat prejudice, bigotry and discrimination. As our nation becomes increasingly diverse, young people need the knowledge and skills to thrive in a globally connected society and world. The Youth for Unity program helps members appreciate themselves as unique and special individuals; understand our society’s diversity; recognize bias and unfairness; and t​ake personal leadership in confronting bias.

Picture13Youth of the Year

The Youth of the Year program provides an opportunity for Clubs to recognize the fantastic attitudes and actions of our kids. The program promotes and celebrates service to Club, community and family; academic performance; moral character; life goals; and public-speaking. Nominations from all local Clubs are accepted for each category: Elementary Youth of the Year, Middle School Youth of the Year, and High School Youth of the Year. One High School Youth of the Year nominee is chosen to represent Boys & Girls Clubs of Indianapolis at the State Youth of the Year competition. Meet this year’s kids!

Picture14Keystone and Torch Clubs 

The Keystone Club is a chartered leadership and service Club for teens ages 14-18. Keystone members elect officers and implement activities focused on service to Club and community, leadership development, education and career exploration, unity, free enterprise and social recreation. Torch Club is a similar program for youth, ages 10-13.