Health and Life Skills

Programs in this core area develop young people’s capacity to engage in positive behaviors that nurture their own well-being, set personal goals and live successfully as self-sufficient adults.

Cavity-Free Zone

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 this country, especially among disadvantaged youth. The Cavity-Free Zone program materials feature fun, engaging sessions and activities for Club members.

SMART Moves – Skills Mastery and Resistance Training

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 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 program’s components are: SMART Kids for ages 6-9; Start SMART for ages 10-12; Stay SMART for ages 13-15.


SMART Girls is a small-group health, fitness, prevention/education and self-esteem enhancement program designed to meet the developmental needs of girls. Through dynamic sessions, highly participatory activities, 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 fit, getting good health care and developing positive relationships with peers and adults.


The Date SMART program is intended to increase young people’s understanding and build the skills they need to achieve healthy relationships free of violence and abuse.  Participating youth also increase their ability to help their friends and family members who may be experiencing dating, sexual or domestic violence.


Act SMART is an HIV/AIDS prevention program designed for Club members ages 6-17. The program features age-appropriate units and activities that focus on health, decision-making and communication skills needed to practice healthy behaviors.

Street SMART

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’ve learned and share it with others by organizing community events that promote the program’s positive messages.

Kids in Control

The Kids in Control safety awareness program helps Club members develop the personal habits and practical skills needed to be safe at the Clubs, at home and in the streets. It builds Club members’ crime prevention and personal safety skills through role-playing , games and other participatory activities.

League of Extraordinary Gentlemen

This program promotes and teaches responsibility in Club boys. The program consists of 14 sessions, each of which concentrates on a specific aspect of manhood through highly interactive activities. Each Club participants receives his own passport to underscore the notion that he is on a personal journey of maturation and growth. The League represents a targeted effort to engage young boys in discussions and activities that reinforce positive behavior.