Youth and Family Development

Unlike most recreation and parks departments, our Youth and Family Development Division provides important outreach initiatives for our community.

Applying Purpose and Passion to Service

Applying Purpose and Passion to Service (APPS) positively impacts our most vulnerable families and communities in Columbus. APPS includes a Job Readiness Program for young adults, violence prevention initiatives and hosts community outreach events.


Capital Kids

Capital Kids is an after-school enrichment program for children in grades K–5. Our trained staff take a comprehensive approach, leveraging state-of-the-art technology, field trips and high-performance standards to bolster your child’s academic achievement. The program is currently offered at four community centers in high-risk neighborhoods, as identified by Columbus City Schools.


City Leaders

This nine-month initiative works to develop Columbus’ leaders of tomorrow by providing, hands-on education and mentoring. City Leaders offers an immersive learning experience for participants teaching them about the inner workings of the City of Columbus. In addition to experimental learning opportunities, participants benefit from mentoring by current leaders from within the City of Columbus and local partner organizations.


Food Office

Serving thousands of meals throughout the year, our Food Office program provides free produce and meals. We host weekly Mobile Produce Markets and well as a summer food program known as Go, Lunch! 


Community Outreach

Our goal is to empower our residents by providing resources, facilitating lifestyle programs and engaging with our community. Partner with our department at your next event.

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Community Resources

Are you or your family in need? Check out these Central Ohio resources below: