Health&Life Skills


Cavity-Free Zone aims to increase young people’s awareness of good oral hygiene and improve their dental health. Cavity-Free Zone was developed in response to a recent Surgeon General’s report on oral health, which revealed a silent epidemic of oral disease in the country, especially among disadvantaged youth. The Cavity-Free Zone program materials feature fun, engaging sessions and activities for Club members ages 6-9, 10-12 and 13-15. Club members can also log on to the program’s Web site to participate in games and other interactive activities that reinforce their learning about oral health. Crest sponsors the Cavity-Free Zone program.


This nationally acclaimed comprehensive prevention program helps young people resist alcohol, tobacco and other drug use, as well as premature sexual activity. SMART Moves features engaging, interactive, small-group activities that increase participants’ peer support, enhance their life skills, build their resiliency and strengthen their leadership skills. This year-round program encourages collaborations among Club staff, youth, parents and representatives from other community organizations. The programs components are: SMART Kids ages 6-9; Start SMART, for ages 10-12; Stay SMART, for ages 13-15; and SMART Parents. SMART Leaders, a peer leader/booster program for older teens, and F.A.N. Club (Family Advocacy Network), an educational and support group program for parents and caregivers of SMART Moves participants, are also available through a partnership between BGCA and Pennsylvania State University, which developed these two programs to increase the scope and positive impact of the original SMART Moves.


SMART Girls is a small-group health, fitness, prevention/education and self-esteem enhancement program designed to meet the developmental needs of girls ages 8-12 and 13-17. Through dynamic sessions, field trips and mentoring opportunities with adult women, Club girls explore their own and societal attitudes and values as they build skills for eating right, staying physically fit, getting good health care and developing positive relationships with peers and adults. The David and Lucile Packard Foundation funded the recent revision of SMART Girls.


Passport to Manhood promotes and teaches responsibility in Club boys ages 11-14. Passport to Manhood consists of 14 sessions, each of which concentrates on a specific aspect of manhood through highly interactive activities. Each Club participant receives his own “passport” to underscore the notion that he is on a personal journey of maturation and growth. Passport to Manhood represents a targeted effort to engage boys in discussions and activities that reinforce positive behavior. Passport to Manhood is an excellent complement to SMART Girls.


Street SMART counteracts the negative lures of gangs, violence and “street” influences on young adolescents ages 11-13. While building awareness and resistance skills, participants develop the confidence and knowledge to make intelligent choices. Street SMART’s three modules teach young people how gangs work and how to resist being recruited, how to recognize and resolve conflicts peacefully and how to become positive peer helpers. Participants reinforce what they have already learned and share it with others by organizing community events that promote the program’s positive messages. The Allstate Foundation sponsors Street SMART.