PLATINUM2024

CENTER FOR WHITLEY COUNTY YOUTH INC

Healthy Young People Don't Just Happen!

aka The Center   |   Columbia City, IN   |  www.thecenterwcy.com

Mission

To promote youth development through service, outreach, and collaboration.

Notes from the nonprofit

Our board decided in 2019 to change our fiscal year from a calendar year to July 1- June 30 Fiscal Year. Please don't hesitate to contact us with any questions you might have!

Ruling year info

2008

Executive Director

Mr. Jeff Wike

Main address

201 W Market St

Columbia City, IN 46725 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

20-5993971

NTEE code info

Youth Centers, Clubs, (includes Boys/Girls Clubs)- Multipurpose (O20)

Christian (X20)

Youth Development Programs (O50)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

Sign in or create an account to view Form(s) 990 for 2023, 2022 and 2021.
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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Problem: Many teens lack an adequate amount of quality relationships with caring community adults, healthy peer environments, and opportunities to grow towards their God-given potential

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

After-School Central

After School Center (ASC) is a community-based, no-cost, after-school initiative designed for 6th to 8th-grade youth. ASC is committed to fostering comprehensive youth development by offering academic support, a safe and monitored environment, and opportunities for recreational engagement, artistic exploration, and interaction with positive adult mentors. Founded in 2005 in Columbia City, Indiana, ASC has since expanded its reach to South Whitley in 2018 and Churubusco in 2020, with the aim of empowering young individuals to achieve their full potential physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually.

Population(s) Served
At-risk youth
Adolescents

After School SERVE (SERVE) is a leadership & job mentoring/training program for 9th to 12th-grade students in and around Whitley County, Indiana. SERVE members volunteer to help facilitate the After-School Central (ASC) program for middle school youth and in the process learn to grow their soft skills, employability, and character, as well as practice leadership. Founded in 2007 in Columbia City, Indiana, SERVE has since expanded its reach to South Whitley in 2020 and Churubusco in 2021, with the aim of empowering young people to become the next generation of leaders.

Population(s) Served
At-risk youth
Adolescents

Summer Central offers a diverse range of activities, outings, trips, camps, and experiences tailored for young people in grades 6 through 12 during the summer months. It serves as an excellent platform for introducing youth to novel places, concepts, and adventures, all while fostering meaningful connections. This program is provided free of charge and is accessible to all youth across our three program locations in Columbia City, South Whitley, and Churubusco.

Population(s) Served

Ground Zero provides a welcoming space for 9th to 12th-grade students to engage in community and explore their faith. Here, students can freely express themselves while participating in games, sharing meals, and engaging in conversations about life and faith through diverse avenues. Ground Zero fosters an environment where every student, regardless of their background or beliefs, feels valued, listened to, and loved. Ground Zero originated in 2021 in Columbia City, Indiana. In 2024, it expanded to South Whitley to serve the teenagers of Whtiko High School.

Population(s) Served

iLEAD is a youth philanthropy pod focused on providing local 9th to 12th-grade students with opportunities to impact Whitley County through service projects and strengthen students' leadership skills.

Population(s) Served

Life Coaching offers personalized one-on-one mentoring sessions with certified life coaches. These sessions provide students with invaluable support, encouragement, and accountability as they navigate through their academic and personal goals. Unlike traditional therapy or counseling, our approach focuses on the present and future, helping students overcome obstacles without dwelling on past traumas or psychological struggles. By empowering students to make positive changes in their lives, our program aims to unlock their full potential and foster growth both academically and personally.

Population(s) Served

Where we work

Awards

Best Program 2008

Northeast Governors Commission for a Drug-Free Indiana

Jewel of the Community 2006

Columbia City Area Chamber of Commerce

"Show Us Your Results Challenge" Winner (1 of 5 winners from 100 applicants in 5 states) 2011

Dekko Foundation

Greg Woll Excellence in Leadership Award 2012

Whitley County Youth for Christ

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of people within the organization's service area accessing food aid

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Context - describing the issue we work on

Direction of Success

Holding steady

Number of donors lending

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Input - describing resources we use

Direction of Success

Increasing

Average number of dollars per person served

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Holding steady

Number of participants engaged in programs

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Number of youth who have a positive adult role model

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Hours of mentoring

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Number of youth who demonstrate that they have developed social skills (e.g., interpersonal communication, conflict resolution)

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Number of youth who demonstrate that they have developed positive relationships

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Number of youth who demonstrate that they are aware of their interests and abilities

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

When we envision the long-term impact of our preventative youth programming, we see...
o Changed family trajectories when young people are equipped and choose different and better paths than many of the poor family examples they've seen modeled their whole lives
o Where broken family and dysfunction is the norm, teens will experience a new kind of 2nd family at The Center, and then have an imitatable example to follow in their own homes and relationships.
o Teens with a low view of their own value, purpose, and potential will learn and live out an expanded hope for their futures
o Young adults will enter their future with valuable work experience and mentors, and character traits that employers desire and co-workers respect.
o Youth will have a better awareness of their talents and passions, have learned from their mistakes, and are more resilient to challenges and failures
o Youth will fully acknowledge their brokenness (hurts, habits, and hangups), and will practice vulnerability and take responsibility for their own well-being

Since 2005, The Center for Whitley County Youth has been partnering with schools and families to surround teens in Whitley County with caring adult relationships and a spectrum of opportunities that holistically improve their social, emotional, physical, spiritual and mental health. With programs and partnerships now operating in Columbia City (2005), South Whitley (2018), and now Churubusco (2020), The Center is serving more than 800 elementary through high school youth each year.
The Center for WCY hosts a variety of youth development programs throughout the week for local teens. The Search Institute (www.search-institute.org) in a 2022 research update on Developmental Relationships confirms our conviction that young people NEED caring adults who challenge growth, provide support, share power, and expand their possibilities. Our program environments are specifically tailored to create connection between local middle and high school young people and caring adults that powerfully and positively shapes the young person’s identity and helps young people develop a thriving mindset. A thriving mindset is an orientation not to just get by in life, but to flourish.

The Center for WCY has a 15+ year history of filling gaps, meeting needs and creating safe spaces for teens, and has done it debt-free, in fiscally-responsible ways, and collaboratively with many like-minded community partners.
With more than 155 years of combined youth development experience just in our staff leadership team alone, our sharp team of staff work creatively, with the end-game in mind, and love young people well.

What began as a single after-school program in Columbia City, has steadily become a thriving multi-site organization that has incrementally added new and expanded opportunities for young people to grow.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To identify where we are less inclusive or equitable across demographic groups, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve, To understand people's needs and how we can help them achieve their goals

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We collect feedback from the people we serve at least annually, We take steps to get feedback from marginalized or under-represented people, We aim to collect feedback from as many people we serve as possible, We take steps to ensure people feel comfortable being honest with us, We look for patterns in feedback based on demographics (e.g., race, age, gender, etc.), We look for patterns in feedback based on people’s interactions with us (e.g., site, frequency of service, etc.), We engage the people who provide feedback in looking for ways we can improve in response, We act on the feedback we receive, We tell the people who gave us feedback how we acted on their feedback

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    The people we serve tell us they find data collection burdensome

Financials

CENTER FOR WHITLEY COUNTY YOUTH INC
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

Want to see how you can enhance your nonprofit research and unlock more insights? Learn More about GuideStar Pro.

CENTER FOR WHITLEY COUNTY YOUTH INC

Board of directors
as of 01/29/2024
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Rex Schrader II

Schrader Auction and Real Estate

Term: 2020 -

Rex (RD) Schrader

Schrader Real Estate & Auction Co.

Amanda Shortgen

Transform Consulting Group

Jake Hoag

Whitley County Consolidated Schools

Vanessa Schoon

Huntington University

Kyle Bauer

Lincoln Financial Group

Katie Dewitt

Dewitt Marketing

Ashley Harman

Vera Bradley

Roberta Hollenbaugh

Michelle Lee

Whitley County Consolidated Schools

Carrie Meyer

Taylor University

Trent Shively

Farmers Grain & Feed Co.

James Sittler

Whitley County Consolidated Schools

John Snyder

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 1/29/2024

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Male, Not transgender
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

No data

Gender identity

No data

Transgender Identity

No data

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

No data