Who We Are
The mission of Boys & Girls Clubs of Boston is to help young people, especially those who need us most, build strong character and realize their full potential as responsible citizens and leaders. We do this by providing: a safe haven filled with hope and opportunity, ongoing relationships with caring adults, and life-enhancing programs.
We will invest and innovate to increase the number of youth we impact.
Central to BGCB’s strategic vision is an outcomes-driven experience that helps members succeed academically, live healthy lifestyles and practice good citizenship.
- Our History
- Our Vision
- Annual Report
Fostering this sense of safety and belonging has been at the root of our service for 125 years.
As times have changed over the decades, BGCB’s Clubs have remained a beacon of hope and opportunity for the young people we serve, providing safe spaces in which our members can learn and grow despite the challenges they may face at home or in their neighborhoods.
From cobbling and woodworking to music production and wheelchair basketball, BGCB’s programs have evolved over more than a century. What has remained consistent is the dedication of our expert staff members, from aquatics directors to social workers, who serve as role models and create positive, lasting relationships with our members.
1893 Bunker Hill Boys Club Opens
In order to provide a safe, productive space for boys, Roxbury Boys Club opens. In 2006, the Club reopens following renovation and expansion, as the Yawkey Club of Roxbury.
1910 Roxbury Boys Club Opens
Frank S. Mason founds the Bunker Hill Boys Club. Doors open in Charlestown on March 11, 1893 with an initial membership of 38 boys.
1925 Boys Clubs of Boston
Bunker Hill Boys Club and Roxbury Boys Club merge as Boys Clubs of Boston, bringing together two strong institutions to create a more effective organization for the community.
1936 First Summer Camp
BGCB opens Camp Wing in Duxbury. Today, it offers full-day camps for seven weeks at each of its sites.
1938 South Boston Club Opens
South Boston Boys Club is founded, enlisting 500 new members in its first year.
1974 Busing Crisis-A Safe Haven
Then and now, Clubs serve as a beacon for kids looking for a safe place where they are accepted and protected without regard to the color of their skin.
1981 Organization Renamed Boys & Girls Clubs of Boston
Girls, many of whom have been attending the Clubs since 1973, are officially admitted to all Clubs as full members. The organization is formally renamed “Boys & Girls Clubs of Boston,” the first in the country to include girls in the name.
1992 Midnight Basketball
During a period of some of the worst gang violence in the city’s history, the Clubs use basketball to calm tensions.
1993 Chelsea Club Opens
BGCB opens a site in the Innes Housing Development. In 2002, it moves to its new home and is renamed the Gerald and Darlene Jordan Club/Kraft Family Youth Center.
1995 Blue Hill Club Opens
A new center is constructed in Dorchester; during the inaugural summer season, more than 200 boys and girls learn to swim. In 2016, the Club is renamed the Berkshire Partners Blue Hill Club in honor of the long-standing and ongoing commitment of individuals at Berkshire Partners.
1996 YouthConnect is Established
Originally known as Youth Service Providers Network (YSPN), this partnership with the Boston Police Department features licensed clinical social workers who provide immediate intervention initiatives for vulnerable youth.
2005 Dearborn Joins BGCB
BGCB assumes management of the Club at Dearborn Middle School in Roxbury, making it an additional “Shared Space” Club organized by BGCB.
2007 First Music Club House
The Blue Hill Club is renovated. New features of the Club include the organization’s first Music Clubhouse, which can today be found in six BGCB locations.
2007 Sumner and Condon Clubs Open
Two new Shared Space Clubs join the BGCB family thanks to Charles Sumner Elementary and Condon Elementary.
2009 Franklin Hill Club Opens
In addition to offering a breadth of programming, such as homework help and music lessons, the new Shared Space Club’s proximity to the Blue Hill Club grants access to facilities such as the pool.
2011 Orchard Gardens Club Opens
Dearborn Club staff and membership relocate to a new facility at the Orchard Gardens Community Center.
2013 Hennigan Club Opens
BGCB implements after-school programming at the James W. Hennigan Elementary School in Jamaica Plain, allowing BGCB to serve an additional 100 youth.
2014 Mattapan Teen Center Opens
The first standalone teen center welcomes 260 teens in its first year, with programs ranging from theater and fitness in its Foundation Room to production and recording in Mattapan Records.
2018 125 Years of Service
BGCB celebrates the 125th anniversary of opening its doors and creating opportunities for the children and teens of Boston and Chelsea.
In our 2020 Annual Report, we recap a year of resilience and innovation demonstrated by BGCB members, staff, and supporters, and also include a special tribute to Josh Kraft starting on p.12.