Minneapolis Beacons engages youth as leaders and learners by transforming schools into active youth centers afterschool and in the summer, providing free high quality educational, recreational, and leadership development activities opportunities to nearly 4,000 kindergarten–12th grade youth and their families at our 11 Beacons Centers located in neighborhoods in North, Northeast, and South Minneapolis.
The Minneapolis Beacons Network is a collaborative initiative between schools, community, and families with the mission to improve academic, social, and lifework development of youth in low-income communities.
Beacons began operating in Minneapolis in 1998 as an adaptation from the successful New York City Beacons Initiative, where over 80 Beacon centers throughout the city still serve youth and neighborhoods today. Today six cities are a part of the national Beacons Network and have ongoing Beacons Initiatives.
The Minneapolis Beacons Network partners the Minneapolis Public Schools with four of the largest Youth Development organizations in the Twin Cities: The YMCA of Metropolitan Minneapolis, The YWCA of Minneapolis, The Boys & Girls Clubs of the Twin Cities, and Minneapolis Schools Community Education.
Beacons programs are supported by funding from the Federal 21st Century Learning Centers, administered through the Minnesota Department of Education.
What did you learn at Beacons?
”I learned to express my thoughts aloud and talk to a big crowd“