Our Mission

Our mission is to provide free programs during after-school and unsupervised hours where students can develop mentally, physically, emotionally and spiritually in a safe environment. Our holistic programming provides students with a place not just to be, but to become. Our programs are offered in five different "buckets":

  1. Everyday Life
  2. Community Connections
  3. Educational Support
  4. Mind/Body
  5. Expressive Arts

We serve students in 7th-12th grade, and also provide ongoing programs and support to help parents navigate through the teenage years. Because student safety is our primary concern, The Bridge is managed by highly experienced staff who are supported by well-trained and pre-screened adult volunteers.

The Bridge Teen Center has been recognized at the local, state, and national level on multiple occasions as a leader and innovator in the field of teen afterschool programming by entities that include Youth Service America, the Afterschool Alliance, the Illinois Afterschool Network, and more.

The Bridge receives no ongoing state or federal funding, and is supported entirely by foundations, individuals, corporations, and churches in the community. Additional support comes from The Bridge Thrift Store, our sister organization whose mission is to provide both financial and programmatic support through service projects and job training programs for students.

For a student membership application, click here.

To check out our free programs for teens, click here.