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Beacons is a collaborative community initiative providing after-school and summer care for young people in grades K–12. Through Beacons, the YMCA partners with Twin Cities area schools to provide high-quality educational, recreational, and leadership development activities and eliminate barriers to participation for all youth.

On any given day in the Beacons program, young people might enjoy a healthy meal, academic groups with licensed teachers, and enrichment groups like sports, music, breakdancing, or art.

The program is designed to help young people:

  • Establish connections with caring adults and peers in a safe space — 96% of Beacons participants say they know an adult in the program will help them if they have a problem

  • Improve whole-person wellbeing — 96% of Beacons participants say the program has helped them identify interests and talents

  • Stay on track academically through high school graduation — Beacons participants are 2.2 times more likely to graduate on time

  • Develop skills to prepare for college, work, and life — More than 70% of Beacons participants who graduate high school enroll in college

  • Foster connections with school and the community — Beacons participants attend school one week more than similar peers

Busses are also provided to young people that qualify for school-day transportation.




Grades 9–12

Part of the Beacons Network — a collaborative initiative between schools, community, and families with the mission to improve academic, social, and lifework development of young people in low-income communities.

Public Notice of Intent to Apply:

The Minneapolis Beacons Network inclusive of its collaborative partners along with its co-applicant the Minneapolis Public Schools intends to submit a grant application in response to the MN Department of Education’s Request for Proposals for the Nita M. Lowey 21st Century Community Learning Centers Grant for Cohort 9 – Federal – Competitive opportunity. A copy of the grant application will be made available online for public review after submission.

A copy of the final application can be accessed here.

Thanks to You

Your generosity makes our good work possible.