LINC Youth Programs
The Lawrence Irvin Neighborhood Center (LINC) was first established back in the mid 1960's by the Bloomington Housing Authority as a community center for the residents in the Sunnyside Housing Project. Many programs through various agencies have come and gone through the years. In 1986, Western Avenue Community Center was approached by community officials to take over programming for the center.
The Lawrence Irvin Neighborhood Center is a large gym that houses some of the best youth basketball coaching and competition in town. LINC also includes two small classrooms for tutoring and mentoring. Program Director Dodie Dunson has deemed LINC as the "family room of the neighborhood". While basketball is the "hook" that entices youth to enter the doors, LINC Youth Programs offer that and so much more.
To volunteer with the programs at LINC, please complete the following paperwork:
- LINC Basketball - A fall through spring basketball program offers area youth in grades 2 through high school a chance for competitive play, while coaches and supervisors serve as role models and mentors. The importance of education and healthy lifestyles is emphasized, as well as educating the youth in the dangers of gang and drug activity. League play is offered November through March. Visit the Calendar for details.
- Teen Club - Open to 12 to 18-year-old teen girls and boys from 6:00 - 8:00 PM. every Tuesday and Thursday at the Lawrence Irvin Neighborhood Center with positive staff and volunteers who provide a curriculum of positive choice and lifestyles along with dinner and recreational activities. This program is a collaboration with the Boys & Girls Club of Bloomington-Normal, the City of Bloomington and the Town of Normal.
- Open Gym - Area youth are able to use the gym facilities to get in a little practice, join a "pick-up" game and socialize with friends in a safe a supervised environment. Visit the Calendar for details.
- AAU Basketball - LINC offers a select group of High School boys a unique opportunity to develop to their highest level in basketball, through a local, regional and national network of sporting events in a summer league through the Amateur Athletic Union, coached by Dodie Dunson and other area experts.
- After School Tutoring at LINC - Students can receive help with school work from 3:00 - 6:00 PM. every Monday through Friday. Tutors will be on hand to help with homework, the computer lab will be open and the center offers wifi for students with a school-issued laptop.
Volunteers with a heart for teens and a lot of energy are welcome! Please call Dodie Dunson at (309) 750-4500 or send an email to Amy Cottone.