Columbia Parks and Recreation
Creating Community through People, Parks and Programs
Armory Sports Center, 701 East Ash, 2nd floor
abacton@GoColumbiaMo.com - (573) 874-6300
C.A.R.E., which began in 1982, is a comprehensive program that includes:
The C.A.R.E. program’s goal is for “Columbia's youth to be ready to enter the workforce and become productive citizens.” Youth lacking in employment experience and life skills can lead to unemployment and underemployment, which can lead to increased crime, alcoholism, drug addiction, and dependence upon government assistance.
C.A.R.E. depends on partnerships with local businesses and agencies to provide work sites for its 14- to 19-year-old trainees; however, 100% of the trainees’ wages are paid by the City of Columbia through the Parks and Recreation Department. There is zero financial cost to the work site partners.
Both C.A.R.E. job coaches and work site mentors provide mentoring to the trainees. C.A.R.E job coaches conduct life skills training and work site mentors oversee the work-based hands-on experience. The youth trainees gain valuable employment experience and life skills while earning a paycheck. C.A.R.E. is a win-win-win situation for the trainees, the work site partners, and the Columbia community as a whole.
If your business or agency would like to be a work site partner, please contact Ron Schmidt at firstname.lastname@example.org or (573) 874-6377.
Free After-School Homework Help for All AgesMondays through Thursdays from 3:00 to 5:00 p.m.
Armory Sports Center, 701 East Ash Street, 2nd FloorMany of the volunteer tutors are provided by MU’s Office of Service Learning. For more information about C.A.R.E.’s Homework Help Program, please contact Ron Schmidt at email@example.com or (573) 874-6377.
Missouri Option Program Partnership
The C.A.R.E. program collaborates with Columbia Public Schools to provide the work-based hands-on experience, mentoring, life skills training, and tutoring components for students who are enrolled in the Missouri Option Program. Trainees may work up to 20 hours per week and earn minimum wage until they graduate.
The C.A.R.E. Missouri Option partnership increases Columbia’s graduation rate and reduces its truancy rate. Local Missouri Option Program students must be referred to the C.A.R.E. program by their cooperating Missouri Option Program teacher.
Boone County Family Resources Collaboration
C.A.R.E. also partners with Boone County Family Resources (BCFR) to provide work-based hands-on experience, mentoring, life skills training, resources for educational pursuits, resume building assistance, and individualized goal setting guidance for clients who have developmental disabilities and are at risk for unemployment and underemployment. Participants in this program also receive specialized support at the work site.
Trainees may work up to 15 hours per week and earn minimum wage. Clients must be referred to the C.A.R.E. program by BCFR, which provides the funding for the program.
C.A.R.E. Summer ProgramC.A.R.E.’s Summer Program is its original and largest program. C.A.R.E. offers an eight-week summer program in which approximately 180 14- to 19-year-old trainees are hired at minimum wage to work up to 20 hours per week at a variety of local work sites.
The online application process begins in January for the following summer.For more information regarding the sign up process, please contact Amy Acton at firstname.lastname@example.org or (573) 874-6300.
The C.A.R.E. Gallery serves as a visual arts work site for the C.A.R.E. summer program. The Gallery coordinator functions as the job coach as well as the work site mentor.
Creative youth are given the opportunity to work as artists. Gallery trainees work with and learn from professional artists in a variety of media during this summer program. They participate in art activities designed to enhance their existing skills and knowledge. Gallery trainees learn about artistic techniques, a variety of media, and create their own artwork.The Gallery is funded in part by the Missouri Arts Council and the City’s Office of Cultural Affairs.