For the last 31 years, people from all over Des Moines join together in August for the Bill Reichardt Golf Classic to support youth programs at the John R. Grubb Community YMCA. This annual event partners with many sponsors to raise money for programs that increase children’s literacy level, support STEM based learning and youth sports programs!
These two programs address the achievement gap in reading, literacy and math skills by providing free summer instruction for nearly 200 elementary students from Des Moines’ urban core. Guided by certified teachers and trained youth counselors, the kids work on academic subjects in the mornings and spend the afternoons taking part in STEM activities, field trips, art projects, swimming and wellness activities.
Since 2014, children attending the Starfish Academy and Power Scholars programs have improved their reading skills an average of 3.3 months over the summer. They return to school in the fall more confident and better prepared to continue their academic growth.
Safety Around Water
Drowning is the second leading cause of death for children ages 5 to 14, with children from communities of color at greatest risk. Safety Around Water is a YMCA program that provides basic water safety instruction to kids in the Grubb community, who often lack access to pools and swim lessons.
The John R. Grubb YMCA has a Teen Center that runs a program after school called G.R.I.T. (Grubb Role models In Training). This program creates a safe space for teens to participate in structured, supervised activities and success groups. The Teen Center also hosts tournaments, contests and snacks throughout the school year.