High School Young Life

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Students and Leaders at a Young Life North side BBQ
Young Life (YL) began in the early 1940s in response to an emerging adolescent subculture, the center of which was the world of the high school. Kids’ lives revolved around their school; the first YL leaders realized that to reach kids who had no interest in organized religion they would have to understand and be present in that world.

Youth culture has changed dramatically in the last six decades. Kids enter adolescence earlier and make the transition to adulthood later. And the high school experience is both changing and varied across the country and around the world. But, the high school years are still a time when most teenagers make important life choices, including what they believe about God. And so YL is there in the world of high school — learning kids’ names, hearing their stories, having fun and sharing with them the great news of a God who loves them.

YL has been in the world of high school kids on Chicago’s North side since 1985.  At times, we have focused on particular schools, including Lane Tech, Lake View, Amundsen, and others.  As kids travel all over the city for high school, we currently find it more effective for YL leaders to fan out and build relationships with teens at schools and in neighborhoods across the area, but create a central hub where kids that live and attend high schools on the North side can connect to the YL community on a consistent basis.


On Mondays we invite all high schoolers to a space after school (4:30) where we can provide a safe place to hang out, study, play basketball and other games, share a healthy meal together, share a positive message from a Young Life leader, and process this message and life with a leader and small group of peers.  It’s an action packed night, all designed for high schoolers to feel loved, empowered, and experience God’s love and purpose for them.  We end the night (at 7:30) by providing safe transportation home to anyone that requests a ride.


We currently meet on Mondays at Ravenswood Covenant Church (4900 N Damen) in the Lincoln Square neighborhood, near Amundsen HS and Winnemac Park.


In addition to our weekly after school club, we also provide opportunities for service projects, mentoring, more focused bible study, school year and summer camps, leadership development programs, and more. All high school students that live or go to school on the North side are welcome to join us!


Young Life Chicago Northside | 2958 N Damen Ave Chicago, IL 60618-8206

Phone: 773-609-4565

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