Youth Guidance receives $15,000 grant from Head, Heart, Hands of IR Club

news release

Youth Guidance was recently awarded a $15,000 grant from Head, Heart, Hands of Indian River Club. This grant will fund Youth Guidance afterschool programs, summer camp, and healthy meals served daily to children in need living in Indian River County.

Youth Guidance anticipates serving 250 children and young adults ages 5-24 this year. Programs focus on three core areas: Academic enrichment, life skills, and vocational training. They include financial literacy, gardening, bicycle repair, culinary arts, woodworking, web design, equestrian, homework help, and STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts, and math).

For teenagers and young adults, Youth Guidance provides certification-based programs, such as culinary arts and a state-registered pre-apprenticeship program, in which students receive training in HVAC, welding, plumbing, carpentry and electric.

Mariah’Ka (pictured) learns how to make her own bag with leftover fabric in the Sewing Program.

“Our goal is to help youth break the cycle of poverty. One of the ways we do this is by providing opportunities for our youth to access in-demand careers within the trade sector,” said Youth Guidance Executive Director Phil Barnes. “Trades jobs in Indian River County are expected to grow 13% over the next eight years, with an average wage of $55,588. These are lucrative careers that can help our youth support themselves and their families.”

All certifications, programs, and meals at Youth Guidance are provided free of charge, thanks to the generosity of the Indian River Club and other local supporters.

“We are so grateful for the continued support of Head, Heart, Hands of Indian River Club,” Barnes said. “This group does so much to improve the lives of people in this community, particularly those living in South County, which is where the majority of our students at Youth Guidance live.”

Youth Guidance Mentoring Academy is dedicated to enriching the lives of Indian River County youth through mentoring relationships that inspire trust, self-esteem, and positive futures. Founded in 1973, Youth Guidance provides daily meals as well as one-on-one and group mentoring programs to children and young adults ages 5-24 with limited resources. Programs focus on academic enrichment, life skills, and vocational training.

If you are interested in learning more about Youth Guidance Mentoring Academy or making a donation, please call 772.492.3933, or visit our website at

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