Columbia's Kids

Columbia's kids and those making a difference in their lives

This spring, Missourian reporters took an in-depth look at kids and the people in the community who are making a difference in their lives.

Challenges remain part of everyday life for young Columbia residents

Despite being named one of the best communities for young people in the U.S., stress, access to activities, relationships with responsible adults and transportation are among the daily obstacles that stand in the way of young Columbia residents.

Granny's House inspires entrepreneur, philanthropist

After making and selling Wacky Bandz bracelets to raise money for a mission trip, Kiona Hughes kept up her work. With the help of Granny's House, she pitched the idea to sell the bracelets to MU sororities with part of the proceeds going to their philanthropies like True North.

Mentoring: An individual focus; a better community

Through mentorship, local organizations look to make the community a better place by giving children positive role models and relationships.

Douglass High School students learn safety, confidence on bikes

John Reid and Gina Overshiner teach Douglass High School students how to ride and repair bikes, and they help them build responsibility by participating in service projects throughout the community.

TELL US: Who makes a difference in Columbia kids' lives?

Readers told us who deserves recognition for their work with kids in Columbia. Whom would you nominate?

TELL US: What do kids in Columbia need?

Missourian readers told us what they think kids in Columbia need.

Columbia woman devotes herself to helping youth

Erin Carrillo organizes community events, mentors youth and volunteers to help with Columbia's teens.

Early reading program helps prepare kids for kindergarten

A reading program, which began in April 2010 at Nora Stewart Early Learning Center, continues to prepare kids for the future.

Teen uses recycling to connect with kids

Hickman High School junior Michael York works with local daycare children through his not-for-profit recycling effort, Coordinated Recycling.

Lactation consultants help get moms, babies off to healthy start

Lactation consultants in Columbia are committedto helping moms have successful breastfeeding experience, which brings health benefits and special bonds to babies and moms.

Volunteer for Foster Grandparents helps preschoolers at Head Start preschool

Maxine Romm, a volunteer for the Foster Grandparent Program, spends four mornings a week with preschoolers at the Worley Street Head Start Center.

A Way With Words and Numbers helps improve Columbia children's reading, math skills

About 250 tutors in the MU program teach children one-on-one at various locations in 30-minute sessions.

Children stay occupied at Fun City Youth Academy

Children learn math skills and the value of money by earning "Fun City Money" from various learning stations at this extracurricular program.

Heart of Missouri CASA provides voice for children in custody cases

Heart of Missouri Court Appointed Special Advocates volunteers share how the organization has changed the lives of local children who have been removed from their homes because of abuse or neglect.

Celebrate the Dream helps shape aspirations

A program for fifth-graders at Parkade Elementary School connects them to business professionals in the community who act as mentors.

CALEB science club utilizes mentoring, networking to create meaningful relationships

"Called to Academic & Leadership Excellence and Building character and confidence," a science club co-founded by an MU School of Medicine professor, gives middle and high school students a head start in preparing for college.

Columbia offers many resources for families, teenagers

A variety of services and information are available to families and teens in Columbia.