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Mission & History

Our Mission

We are more than an after school program!

We promote opportunity for students through intentional afterschool programming that provides education, exposure, and mentorship. The Teen Center is a unique collaborative effort of St. Luke UMC, Burke High School, Nebraska Methodist College and numerous community partners.

We work to create a space:

  • where the adults aren’t always the teachers
  • with high expectations, high support and much love
  • where we are all contributors and have a vital voice
  • where we work to be critically conscious and deeply reflective
  • where sometimes the most important task at hand is searching the toiletry closet for deodorant
  • where everybody’s hard is different and laughter is the norm
  • where love is the default

Our Story

St. Luke United Methodist Church and Burke High School have been after-school partners for over thirty years. The relationship was informal until the development of the Teen Center in 2007. St. Luke noticed students hanging around and wandering the neighborhood; later finding out that these students were not eligible for transportation through the school and were waiting for working parents to pick them up. Additionally, there were students who did qualify for transportation but were not seeking out after-school programs once they returned to their neighborhoods. St. Luke worked with Burke administrators, held a capital campaign, renovated over 10,000 square feet within the building and opened an after-school program in 2007. 

Since 2007, the Teen Center has grown immensely in all ways possible. Some highlights include: receiving the CLC grant in conjunction with Collective for Youth, an annual distribution of $10,000 in scholarships and most recently, the creation of our own 501(c)(3) in 2021. 

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