Our Impact

Teen Empowerment Strategy

For almost 20 years, the Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Orange Coast has served teens making it one of the longest-standing and most successful teen centers in Orange County. Club teens participate in our Teen Empowerment Strategy, a comprehensive approach to impacting their lives and preparing them for their transition into adulthood. Our Teen Empowerment Strategy focuses on core areas such as college preparedness, life skills, recreation, fiscal responsibility, career aspirations, social skills, volunteer work, and academic reinforcement. In recent years, the Club has steadily increased its investment in teen services in areas such as college scholarships, internships, outreach efforts, and providing them with a dedicated space at each of our Club locations where teens can feel safe and supported in their development.  

Teen Centers
Youth of the Year

Teen Centers

Each of our locations now offers a dedicated space for teens with a separate entrance and branding strategy. Our teen centers are innovative, state-of-the-art complexes dedicated to and designed specifically for teens--the new definition of work-play-learn teen center environments. Stop by and visit our HOOPS Teen Center in Costa Mesa, Side Door Teen Center in Irvine, The Bluffs Teen Center in Newport Beach, and The Garage Teen Center in Santa Ana.

Youth of the Year

Each year, we have the distinct honor of selecting and recognizing a Youth of the Year from our Clubs. Picking one outstanding teen is always a very difficult decision, but it's also really rewarding to see all that our teens have accomplished thus far in their young lives and to hear about their goals for the future.

We are excited to announce our 2018 Youth of the Year, Miguel Marquez. A senior at Middle College High School in Santa Ana, Miguel has been simultaneously enrolled in high school and community college classes for the past two year. In June, he graduated with both a high school diploma from Middle College High School and an associate of arts degree from Santa Ana College.

In addition to his dual coursework, he was class president and worked two jobs. During his junior year, he founded and was president of a social activist club at his school called Minority Empowerment Through Awareness--an avenue for minority students, like him, to voice their concerns and feel a sense of empowerment. Throughout high school, he was also actively involved in the Volleyball Club, Eco Club, and Wizards for Water, which raises money for water in Africa.

On top of all this, he maintained a 4.4 GPA and a drive to reach for greatness!

This fall, Miguel will attend University of California, Berkeley to study public policy. He hopes to be a voice for those who are afraid to speak up and to inspire America's youth.

"Miguel has proven that he is a true leader who has developed the skills to guarantee for him a successful future. He is resilient and knows how to overcome any and all obstacles. His success is possible because of his strong work ethic and his ability to think critically and collaborate with others. Miguel believes in himself and is determined to achieve the American Dream," said Rafael Ramos, Miguel's teacher and advisor.

Miguel attributes some of his success to the support he receives from the Boys & Girls Club. He said, "My parents work hard to give me all they can, but sometimes things I need are out of reach. Whether it be for academic or emotional support, the Boys & Girls Club has been my constant safety net. Through the Club, I have been privileged to have access to computers for school work, staff for mentorship, academic assistance and motivation...and there is always something to eat."

As Youth of the Year, Miguel received a ,000 scholarship to use toward his education. Our Youth of the Year runners up each received a ,000 scholarship.