This program for boys in 3rd-8th grade inspires boys to be themselves, be active and belong. Twice a week for 7 weeks, two trained volunteer coaches lead an elementary or middle school team through practices that utilize running to help boys gain confidence, self-expression, and respect for peers and coaches. Each fall and spring season culminates in a 5k race. Scholarships and financial assistance may be available. Go online to find out more information.
PO Box 163, Amlin, Ohio 43002
Former winner of National Library of the Year, CML is an amazing resource in the community. With 23 locations throughout Franklin County, they provide a lot more than just books, including a lot of free online resources, school help, specialized programs, community events and a lot more.
96 South Grant Avenue, Columbus, Ohio 43215
A free week-long summer residency program for racially and ethnically underrepresented high school students interested in exploring careers in accounting and business. Visit the website for contact information.
The Ohio State University, Fisher College of Business
2100 Neil Avenue, Columbus, Ohio 43210
Provides free after school programs for elementary and middle-school aged youth, programs including academics, enrichment activities, and health and fitness. The ASAS Columbus program serves at several Columbus City School locations (specific schools are listed on their website as they change from time to time).
1743 West Lane Avenue, Columbus, Ohio 43221
ASAS Columbus: columbusasas.org
ASAS Ohio: asasohio.org
Provides social services for Asian, Asian American and Pacific Islanders in Central Ohio. The agency advocates for community sustainability through its core services:
Office: 4700 Reed Road, Suite B, Columbus, Ohio 43220
AHI Free Clinic – OSU Rardin Family Practice: 2231 North High Street, Columbus, Ohio 43201
A summer program for young women in middle school and high school to experience mathematics through engaging activities in a nontraditional environment. Participants will build confidence in their math and programming abilities and develop a deeper understanding of a variety of topics, including mathematical and algorithmic reasoning and problem solving skills.
The Ohio State University, Department of Mathematics
231 West Eighteenth Avenue, Columbus, Ohio 43210
Offers one-to-one community-based and school-based mentoring programs, as well as week-long, overnight camps during the summer for youth. Visit the website or call to find out how to enroll a child.
Serves youth ages 6 through 18 from across the city. For a low cost, the nationally-acclaimed club provides members with access to after-school and summer programming oriented around three pillars: Academic Success, Healthy Lifestyles, and Character & Leadership. Club members have access to tutoring, gym space, teen-specific areas, field trips, career-readiness opportunities and mentoring.
Offers study tools and test prep, as well as 24-hour online support for students. They have free programs for K-12, college students and adult learners. Online tutors are available Monday through Friday.
271 Madison Avenue, New York, New York 10016
Toll Free: (866) 272-4638
Offers multiple programs in Columbus individuals, youth and families in zip codes 43203, 43205, 43209, 43213, and 43215. Their Broad Street Food Pantry helps families in need to have healthy meals; COMPASS provides limited rent and utility assistance.
760 East Broad Street, Columbus, Ohio 43205
The U.S. Department of State sponsors multiple programs for educational, cultural, and professional exchanges across the world. Full scholarships for youth are available.
High School Study Abroad: exchanges.state.gov/highschool
A free week-long summer camp for students 14-18 years old. Students learn various aspects of engineering, including automotive, simulation and manufacturing. They will have the opportunity to hear from CAR researchers, complete hands-on projects and take field trips.
930 Kinnear Road, Columbus, Ohio 43212
A free, week-long summer camp for military children ages 8 to 15. Priority enrollment is given to children of wounded, injured, ill and/or fallen military members. The camp is held at various locations across the US, and helps kids learn new skills, build character, and make friends while enjoying the outdoors. Complete their online application for enrollment or call for more information.
Main Office: 801 North West Street, Raleigh, North Carolina 27603
Supports children in the Columbus community whose parent has cancer, by providing a free summer camp experience and year-long peer support. Camp Kesem is operated by student volunteers and serves approximately 150 campers ages 6-16 every year.
Camp location: YMCA Camp Kern, 5291 St. Rt. 350, Oregonia, Ohio 45054
A neighborhood-based community center that serves the near east and near south neighborhoods of Columbus, Ohio. They offer soft skills training, employment assistance, financial education training and emergency housing programs to help access rent or mortgage assistance, food nutrition programs, utility services, health care, parenting workshops and more. Additionally they offer afterschool programs, summer programs, and child care for ages six-weeks through five-years-old.
1150 East Main Street, Columbus, Ohio 43205
Visit your local library to get access to free books, music, movies and documentaries. Some of the libraries listed will also have group reading times for children, homework help, job and business help, and fun events for people of all ages and more. Contact your local library to confirm what services they are currently offering.
14 West Lakeview Avenue, Columbus, Ohio 43202
Offers free adult education programs, basic literacy classes (including financial, workplace and technology literacy) for families, citizenship classes and GED test preparation. They also provide career coaching and entrepreneurship skill building, life and wellness coaching, ASL (American Sign Language) classes, Spanish classes and more. For youth they offer tutoring and homework help, summer camps for children ages 7-13 years old, internships, and an employment program (called A.M.P.) that provides job skills and work experience to youth and young adults between the ages of 14-24 in Franklin County.
A free violence reduction program offered to youth ages 14 to 21, living in zip codes 43207, 43203, 43223, and 43211 evening activities. The recreation centers located in these zip codes are open until 10 pm to engage youth in the arts and in educational and recreational activities. Gang and violence mediation and intervention are also provided.
1111 East Broad Street, Columbus, Ohio 43205
Offers academic programs and a safe place to learn and play after school and during the summer for a very low cost. Children can get homework help, tutoring and a nutritious snack and/or hot meal. They also offer anger management, substance abuse, violence prevention and recreation and enrichment activity (like field trips, drama and art) programs are offered.
Offers a year-long program for youth entering the 6th-8th grade, who are residents of the City of Columbus. Participants have the opportunity to gain real life skills by working on projects and attending events that will guide them towards becoming positive leaders in their communities. Applicants will need the recommendation of an administrator or teacher to be considered.
1111 East Broad Street, Columbus, Ohio 43205
A community‐based, non‐profit, advocacy organization that works to empower African Americans and marginalized groups through economic, educational and social progress with programs, classes and services.
788 Mount Vernon Avenue, Columbus, Ohio 43203
Provides graduating high school seniors an opportunity to create art at the Columbus Recreation & Parks Department’s Cultural Arts Center (CAC). This opportunity comes at no (or very little) cost to the participant. No artistic history is required to participate. Artists who participate in this program may be eligible to have their work displayed in a future Cultural Arts Center exhibition. For eligibility and guidelines, please review the appropriate application on their website.
139 West Main Street, Columbus, Ohio 43215
A free week-long summer camp that introduces young women in grades 8-10 to the data science and analytics field. Students will gain hands-on experience on scientific methods and processes for extracting new knowledge from data, using animation software, giving presentations. Visit the website for contact information.
The Ohio State University, Translational Data Analytics Institute
1760 Neil Avenue, Columbus, Ohio 43210
A free, two-week summer digital animation program for young women in 7th and 8th grade. The mentors are Ohio State graduate students and faculty engage the young women graphics and animation, integrating problem-solving skills, collaborative learning and presentation.
Advanced Computing Center for the Arts & Design
1813 North High Street, Columbus, Ohio 43210
Program: Offers youth and their families mental, emotional and behavioral health programs and services. Licensed social workers and counselors provide counseling and clinical treatment programs addressing a range of issues including school concerns, sexual abuse, delinquency, domestic violence, family conflict, substance abuse and mental health issues. They also offer parenting classes, free kindergarten readiness programs and after-school and summer programs at their two youth centers.
Eligibility: ages (from 6 weeks old up to 21 years old) vary per program
Cost: government insurance (Medicaid, Molina, Caresource), private insurance and self-pay (sliding scale fees based on income); most programs are free
Referral: individuals may refer themselves or be referred by someone else for the counseling programs; for psychiatric services they need to be referred through a Directions for Youth counselor
Central Intake: (614) 294-2661
Helps immigrants and refugees from all countries establish roots and gain self-sufficiency in Central Ohio. They offer job training, mentoring, English language classes, after school tutoring for children, case management for victims of domestic violence and much more. They provide these youth, adult and family care programming’s at various sites throughout Central Ohio. Visit the website for a list of all the program sites.
Main Office: 1060 Mount Vernon Avenue, Columbus, Ohio 43203
Offers free youth and adult programming and connects families facing suburban poverty in Hilliard to resources. Programs include a summer lunch program for children, ESL classes, a legal clinic, winter coat store and more.
Upper Arlington Lutheran Church (UALC) at Mill Run
3500 Mill Run Drive, Hilliard, Ohio 43026
Provides a free, medically safe environment in an outdoor adventure setting for children with serious illnesses and their families. This camp is for youth ages 7-21 who live with serious medical conditions, such as cancer, facial differences, rheumatoid arthritis, rare diseases, cystic fibrosis, and other disorders of the heart, lungs, blood, kidneys and gastrointestinal system. FHF offers adaptive programs with personalized medical care, psychosocial support and nutrition services so that campers can develop positive self-esteem and nurture social bonds. Activities include archery, swimming, ropes courses, arts and crafts, woodshop, nature, boating and fishing.
5260 State Route 95, Mount Gilead, Ohio 43338
Provides refugee youth ages 11 and up education, year-round soccer programming, after-school tutoring, academic enrichment summer camp, leadership training and other resources and support to empower them to succeed in academics, soccer, and to positively impact their wider communities. Tuition is free and they offer free lunch.
A ten-week program for girls in 3rd through 8th grade in which they develop a life-long appreciation for health and fitness. Trained coaches lead small teams through activities, running games and lessons that inspire girls to become independent thinkers, enhance their problem solving skills and make healthy decisions. The program ends with the girls doing a community service project and completing a 5K event. They also offer a summer camp for girls in 3rd-5th grade.
1145-L Chesapeake Avenue, Columbus, Ohio 43212
Is a settlement house located in Franklinton on the near west side of Columbus, Ohio. They provide emergency financial assistance (e.g., rent, utilities, prescriptions, and other critical needs), offers access to a mobile medical unit access from The Breathing Association, and case management services. Provides emergency food assistance to households living within the service area (zip codes 43222, 43223, and 43215). Other services available at the pantry: home delivery to people with disabilities, and diapers are available. They also provide educational services such as preschool, after-school, summer day camp and team sport programming.
183 Hawkes Avenue, Columbus, Ohio 43223
A week-long summer camp that introduces middle school students (grades 6-8) to multiple world languages and global citizenship. Participants receive a couple hours of world language instruction in small groups, followed by a cultural lesson taught in English, and activities on global issues and what it mean to be a global citizen. Scholarships are available.
The Ohio State University
1775 College Road, Columbus, Ohio 43210
Serves children and their families living in poverty, helping them to get housing and resources, while providing educational after-school/summer programming and support for kids grades K-8. They also host Supporting Partnerships to Assure Ready Kids (SPARK), a program for three and four-year-old children, not enrolled in Pre-K, who will soon enter Kindergarten.
Homeless & Emergency Shelter: (614) 274-7000
727 East Main Street, Columbus, Ohio 43205
Offer fun, healthy safe experiences during the school year and throughout the summer, building academic, career, artistic, and physical strengths for boys of color ages 9-15 years old whose families earn 200% of poverty or less.
788 Mount Vernon Avenue, Columbus, Ohio 43203
Offers a tuition-free youth jazz program, focusing on listening, learning and performing jazz. They also provide band and vocal classes, workshops, summer programs and group performances. Auditions for Columbus Youth Jazz is held in the spring each year.
769 East Long Street 4th Floor, Columbus, Ohio 43203
Provides a wide range of recreation and cultural arts opportunities. They also offer teen programs, summer and spring break camps for kids with and without special needs, after school programs, preschool and daycare, special events and more.
1125 College Avenue, Columbus, Ohio 43209
Offers a visual and performing arts summer camp and “school break” camps in the spring and winter for children ages 5 to 13. They also host community events, such as the Heritage Music Festival, MLK Day Open House and art exhibits at their Elijah Pierce Gallery.
835 Mount Vernon Avenue, Columbus, Ohio 43203
Works with high school students from under-served communities to educate them about and prepare them for careers in the legal profession. They provide year-round, four-year academic and professional programming to participants. The program is free to all participants, and students are provided bus passes and lunch.
303 East Broad Street, Columbus, Ohio 43215
Provides youth development programs and activities for Franklin County youth in grades K-12. Their After School Learning Zone and Summer Learning Zone provides homework help, academic enrichment, field trips, fitness, free meals and other fun and exciting enrichment activities. Services are free to TANF eligible families. In collaboration with the Achieve More & Prosper (A.M.P.) Program, the Career Zone provides employment resources and opportunities to in-school youth, ages 16-18 experiencing barriers to academic and career success. Visit the website for site locations.
A STEM education and financial literacy organization serving 3rd–12th grade students. Their programs include: STEM clubs, workshops, leadership training, summer camps and mentoring. Their E-STEM Chapter gives youth an opportunity to be exposed to STEM and business concepts. Some services are free. Scholarships are available.
PO Box 361061, Columbus, Ohio 43236
A national, non-profit organization that helps develop academic and leadership skills in public high school students who come from low-income households or will be first-generation college students. LEDA Scholars are recruited as juniors in high school and spend the following summer at the Aspects of Leadership Summer Institute. The 7-week summer program is free and includes leadership study, writing instruction, standardized test preparation and college guidance.
121 West 36th Street, New York, New York 10018
A free 4-day summer camp that gives high school-aged youth a chance to explore careers in healthcare. During the camp, high school students will engage in hands-on interactive and experiential learning activities and get a chance to work directly with medical and physician assistant students, doctors, and other health professionals.
Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine, Dublin
6775 Bobcat Way, Dublin, Ohio 43016
A free six-week residential academic enrichment program for rising high school seniors who have a strong academic record and are interested in studying and exploring careers in science and engineering. Students’ housing, meals and activity costs covered and they only have to pay for transportation to and from MIT. Visit the website for contact information.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
77 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02139
Current high school students who attend or whose home Columbus City School is Linden-McKinley STEM Academy, South or Marion-Franklin High are able to have homework help, cultural field trips, college tours, test prep, career exposure, a six-week college-going experience with internship opportunities and more. This program is free for eligible students. Visit the website for more information and how to apply.
700 Children’s Drive, Columbus, Ohio 43205
Offers several free services to the Latino community including homework help, after school programs, summer camps, 24/7 translation and interpretation services, ESL and citizenship classes for adults, a tobacco cessation program, free car seat checks, and a support group for victims of domestic violence and sexual assault.
Offers one-time events, summer camps and scholarships to support the youth of military families. Visit the website for contact information.
Nationwide & Ohio Farm Bureau 4-H Center
2201 Fred Taylor Drive, Columbus, Ohio 43210
OMK Contacts: ohio4h.org/statewide-programs/operation-military-kids/about-omk/contact-omk
Works with families and children, farmers and business owners, community leaders and elected officials to build better lives, better businesses and better communities in Ohio. Many programs fall into four categories, including;
A free youth development program dedicated to serving economically disadvantaged children in the Columbus community. Their programs include a sports summer camp for youth ages 9 to 15, a youth leadership academy that prepares youth ages 15-18 for college and future careers, and community-based sports clinics throughout the year. Transportation is free to all campers via buses.
2400 Olentangy River Road, Columbus, Ohio, 43210
Provides high school students with year-round tutoring services, test preparation, college/cultural tours and personal/career development activities and workshops. They encourage first-generation and/or low-income college bound 9th, 10th, and 11th grade students who attend or live in the service areas of Briggs, East, South, or Walnut Ridge High Schools to apply for admission.
154 West 12th Avenue, Columbus, Ohio 43210
Supports military kids through activities and programming specifically targeted to youth of the guard and reserve. Programs include camps for youth and teens, family workshops and free days at the zoo. Most programs are free or for a very nominal price. Programs are open to all Ohio military members.
2201 Fred Taylor Drive, Columbus, Ohio 43210
A week-long summer program that provides high school students, who have an interest in the medical sciences, with an overview of pharmacology and its relationship to health, disease and society. The cost includes supplies, meals, snacks, field trip expenses and a T-shirt.
Ohio State University College of Pharmacy
500 West Twelfth Avenue, Columbus, Ohio 43210
Provides a variety of programs designed to strengthen families on the south side area of Columbus. Their services include GED classes, adult education and workforce development, early education child care, youth and family services, in collaboration with community partners (Boys & Girls Club, House of Hope, Southeast Healthcare Services, Godman Guild, St. Stephen’s Community Center, Alvis, Community Development for All People and South Side Roots Café).
280 Reeb Avenue, Columbus, Ohio 43207
Students learn a new language, discover another culture, and truly become global citizens through an exchange program for youth ages 15-19, sponsored by your local Rotary club. Visit the website to find your local Rotary club.
Helps kids learn critical thinking through the game of chess, by supporting chess clubs, hosting friendly tournaments, facilitating chess-based leadership training, and curating unique chess-themed workshops and experiences. Clubs receive supplies, training and ongoing support from ROI to launch and maintain weekly site-based chess clubs and leadership activities at their local school, library, faith-based organization, or community center.
Serves: Single Adults & Families
Offers various services for Central Ohio families throughout the year. Their services include an in-residence rehabilitation program, after school learning centers for youth to get tutoring and homework help, Christmas assistance and food meal boxes, housing and rent assistance, utility assistance, help for trafficking survivors and veteran support services. Visit the website for their Family Thrift Store locations in Central Ohio and for more information on each program.
Link to Family Thrift Store list: easternusa.salvationarmy.org/southwest-ohio/central-ohio/thrift-stores
Is a faith-based, nonprofit organization that provides homework help, after-school programs, and summer day camps for elementary and middle school students. They also host community events and community meals.
Community House: 1635 South Hamilton Road, Columbus, Ohio 43227
Mailing Address: PO Box 65, Hilliard, Ohio 43026
Provides a variety of supportive services for Somali youth and adults.
3422 Cleveland Avenue, Columbus, Ohio 43224
Provides childcare for children from 6 weeks to 5 years old, family services, senior services, and youth programming for youth ages 5 to 18 years of age. They also have a Choice Food Pantry, urban farm, Christmas gift programs, rent assistance and other neighborhood services.
1500 East Seventeenth Avenue, Columbus, Ohio 43219
Provides rising high school seniors with a strong interest in computers, engineering and science with the opportunity to gain skills needed to pursue careers in STEM fields. The Summer Academy includes seminars and hands-on projects, designed and taught by Carnegie Mellon faculty, teachers and graduate students. Students admitted will not be charged tuition, housing or dining fees. Visit the website for contact information.
Carnegie Mellon University
5000 Forbes Avenue, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15213
A free 12-day program that aims to increase understanding of the law and its possibilities among Ohio high school students. Students participating will have daily interactions with lawyers, judges, and Ohio University (OU) faculty, and develop knowledge and skills that will prepare them for collegiate study.
1 Ohio University, Athens, Ohio 45701
A summer internship for 15-18 year old teens designed to teach life and work skills through hands-on experiences in urban farming. During the 8 week program, they learn about horticulture, the environment, cooking, health and nutrition, customer service, budgets and money matters, entrepreneurship, teamwork and communication. Participants receive 20 hours per week paid work experience. They begin recruiting Columbus City teens in early spring.
Franklin Park Conservatory & Botanical Gardens
1777 East Broad Street Columbus, Ohio 43203
A faith-based organization that offers a free space for young people of all ages where they can do their homework, get tutoring, play sports, create art, music, dance and more. They also serve a cooked meals and can take food home from their food pantry. Contact them for more information.
874 Helenhurst Court, Westerville, Ohio 43081
Offers a science camp for current 7th and 8th grade girls who are interested in STEM. Students take a full daily curriculum with classes in earth science, biology, chemistry, physics, robotics and engineering. Campers use campus science labs and stay in Wooster’s college dorms. Financial aid is available for qualifying students.
308 East. University, Wooster, Ohio 44691
The weekly school-based mentoring program pairs Upper Arlington, Marble Cliff and Grandview Heights teen mentors with children enrolled in the after school programs in the Upper Arlington and Grandview Heights school districts. They award at least two college scholarships each year to volunteer teen mentors and also offer several summer camp opportunities.
3600 Tremont Road, Upper Arlington, Ohio 43221
This community center in Gahanna is a place for school-aged youth to build relationships, play games, get homework help, or just hang out, in a safe and inclusive environment. They also offer workshops, game nights, special events and family nights.
254 Agler Road, Gahanna, Ohio 43230
A week-long experience for two high school juniors or seniors from each state to see national government in action and meet and hear from senators, cabinet members, officials from the Departments of State and Defense, directors of other federal agencies and more in Washington, DC. All transportation, hotel and meal expenses will be provided by The Hearst Foundations. In addition, each delegate will also be awarded a $10,000 college scholarship. In Ohio, the United States Senate Youth Program makes its student selections from among participants who attend Buckeye Boys State, Buckeye Girls State or the Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership (HOBY) program.
Through this program, middle and high school age students can participate in after school and summer youth internships to gain skills growing vegetables in sustainable aeroponic towers. In the free youth development program, they gain leadership and entrepreneurial skills while preparing weekly cooking demonstrations and having fun.
The Ohio State University
1787 Neil Ave, Columbus, Ohio 43210
Offers substance abuse treatment, prevention, and recovery support programs for racial minorities in Ohio. Services include after-school, in-school and summer youth programs, family needs assistance, reentry programs, counseling, and more.
700 Bryden Avenue, Columbus, Ohio 43215
Offers art classes, opportunities to earn high school credit (Art & Ecology course), workshops and other free programs for teens throughout the year. Visit the website for contact information.
The Ohio State University
1871 North High Street, Columbus, Ohio 43210
Serves: Single Adults & Families, Youth & Teens
Programs for men, women and children of all ages covering health and fitness, swimming, age-specific activities, childcare, summer camps, juvenile justice, housing, programming for infants and children with special needs (ECRN+), loanable adaptive equipment, and more.
Provides free open studio space and one day workshops for teens, at select Columbus Metropolitan Libraries, to give them hands-on experience with music programming, audio recording, videography, video editing, digital art and more. Visit the “Events” page or contact for program times.
Serves: Families (referring to emergency shelter access)
Provide affordable housing and supportive services for women recovering from drug-related, alcohol-related, and mental illnesses. The YWCA Family Center provides emergency shelter and critical services including, family assistance, family advocacy, childcare, employment and resource center to help central Ohio families find housing. The YWCA Kids Place offers affordable childcare during the school year and summer programs for families in Gahanna and Westerville school districts. They also provide leadership training for high school girls and adult women.