The Boys & Girls Clubs of the Sioux Empire
Youth of the Year, locally named after Boys' Club founding member Bob Beck, is our signature effort to foster a new generation of leaders, fully prepared to live and lead in a diverse, global and integrated world economy.
In the 21st-century world and workplace, leadership skills such as communication, goal-setting and teamwork are essential for everyone - especially young people preparing to meet the challenges of adolescence and adulthood. With a grassroots beginning in 1947, Youth of the Year has evolved into a comprehensive leadership development program, which includes:
•Youth of the Month
•Junior Youth of the Year
•Youth of the Year
Our Club is not only filled with children and teens, it’s filled with stories of dreams and inspiration for the future. Each child who enters our doors has their own unique story and needs you to invest in their Great Future.
Jesse loves to cook and is inspired by his grandfather’s passion and skills in the kitchen. When asked what his future holds, the 15-year-old’s face lights up and without hesitation, Jesse will tell you his dream is to become a chef. Jesse credits his early years at the Club for helping him build a solid foundation to dream. In 2014 he competed in the Gourmet Guys competition with his signature Be Great Cheesecake.
By all accounts, Jesse’s life hasn’t been easy. His family was traumatized by the death of his baby brother and home life became very unstable. Jesse didn’t know how to manage his grief and acted out. The Club became his shoulder to lean on to move forward in positive manner. When Jesse presented to judges in our Youth of the Year competition he said, “When I learned about the Youth of the Year, I didn’t want anything to do with it, I didn’t think I deserved it. And then, I thought about it more and decided I had to participate because I owed it to the Club to try after all the staff have done for me.” He went
on to say, “I’m not going to lie, I didn’t think I’d be here.
I didn’t think I’d get this far. As Youth of the Year, I’d be
able to represent the Club that helped me, and is shaping
me into the teenage I am today. I’m on the road to success,
keeping my feet on the path the Club paved for me. And,
as I take each step, I get closer to my goal and remember
the important lesson the staff have taught me. The one
thing we can all say is the Club really impacted us.”
Jesse ended his speech with, “So as we step closer
to our destiny, we will look back on the one
place that might have started it for us.”