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Our History

Humble Beginnings: 

     With a station wagon and calling from God,  Bill Hobbs set out to change the lives of young people living in disadvantaged neighborhoods in West Palm Beach. Loading his car with sports equipment and snacks, he sought out vacant lots to invite children to engage in recreational activities. As he connected with the youth, he gained profound insights into their challenges. Drawing from his past experience with first offenders, Bill extended his assistance to young people in communities facing concentrated disadvantages, recognizing the impact of limited resources and absent father figures on their lives. Determined to address the issue proactively, he aimed to intervene before the youth encountered troubles.

      Through the fusion of love from Jesus Christ and his love for sports, Bill inspired young minds to envision alternative paths towards happy, healthy, and productive lives. Evolving into a paternal figure and a reliable ally for those in need, his efforts culminated in the establishment of Urban Youth Impact (UYI) in 1997.

     In 1999, Bill spearheaded the establishment of UYI's PARK (Positive Atmosphere Reaching Kids) Center, situated across from Dunbar Village, a Section Eight housing facility. This initiative aimed to broaden the reach of UYI's programs, enabling more children to engage in activities such as bible study, after-school enrichment, and sports.

     Facing the need for a permanent location, UYI acquired the Dream Center in 2005. Subsequently, in 2008, the Leadership Academy, UYI's flagship afterschool program for K-8th grade students, commenced with 115 participants.

     Central to UYI's mission is fostering a loving relationship with Jesus Christ. In 2011, Bow Down Church was established to provide on-site spiritual growth opportunities for children and families impacted by UYI programming.

      In 2020, UYI initiated Carver Christian Academy, offering free private school education to inner-city youth. Presently, 51 students are enrolled in kindergarten through third grade, with a growing waitlist. The aspiration is to add one grade each year until a complete elementary and middle school is established.

      UYI's outreach programs have also expanded to encompass three low-income housing facilities in West Palm Beach, Riviera Beach, and Belle Glade.

UYI's Evolution:

UYI Today:

     UYI, equipped with extensive experience, programming expertise, and reliable partnerships, aims to alter the life trajectories of children residing in disadvantaged neighborhoods within Palm Beach County. As the only faith-based organization in Palm Beach County employing a comprehensive approach, UYI addresses the needs of inner-city youth through elementary education, afterschool programs, family support, career readiness, and enrichment activities. Every week, over 300 children actively engage in UYI programs, with an annual estimate of over 1,000 individuals, including family members, connecting with its mission.

     Now under the leadership of the new President and CEO, Chris Tress, the organization's overarching objective is to love, equip, and empower children from preschool through college or career, serving as a steadfast guide for a successful future. UYI surrounds participants with mentoring, academic assistance, spiritual engagement, enrichment activities, and college and career readiness initiatives, breaking the cycle of poverty for these young individuals.

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