Horizon Bank Supports Making the Grade Program for Boys & Girls Club

March 4, 2015 02:46 PM

Horizon Bank has been supporting the good work of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Northwest Indiana for many years. Recently, the bank completed a five-year donation commitment with annual contributions helping to fund the group’s Making the Grade program.

Making the Grade is a 10-week basic skills program offered after school for kids ages 9 – 15. Students learn skills such as public speaking, using library resources, cooking, and more. The program is run on a quarterly basis, with groups of up to 15 students participating each time, at both the Hammond and Merrillville locations.

Rob Gardiner, Market President for Lake County at Horizon Bank, said of the program, “Making the Grade provides excellent opportunities for students to learn skills that are not always covered in the classroom. In addition, the program helps to instill confidence and leadership qualities that will serve students well as adults. Horizon Bank is proud to be a sponsor of these kinds of activities throughout the communities we serve.

Here’s just some of what this outstanding program has accomplished in the past few years:

Hammond Club
Number of youth served: 114
Number of youth who completed the program: 84
Number of sessions completed: 134

Making the Grade Program Achievements
Students expanded their learning experience through interactive activities, field trips, and use of computers. This growth has allowed students to improve their academic achievement in school.

Additionally, students have become more proactive in helping other club members with homework, assisting staff with activities, and more. The program has instilled confidence, and given members the tools to become successful young adults.

The program has focused on preparing students to achieve academic success, to build good character and citizenship, and to live healthy lifestyles.

Students took trips to their local library to learn how to search for and check out books.

A “Making the Grub” program was created by the club’s Learning Center Coordinator, as part of Making the Grade.

Students developed recipes and created their own cookbook.

The cookbook featured a full range of appetizers, breads, meats, desserts, and more.

Merrillville Club
Number of youth served: 76
Number of youth who completed the program: 70
Number of sessions completed: 166

Making the Grade Program Achievements
The Merrillville Club originally set a goal of increasing member GPAs by 10%. To date, the Making the Grade sessions have exceeded that goal in every quarter.

Students are assisted four days per week, for an hour each day. Additional help is available if needed.

Each member has challenges in different school subjects, and the program is tailored to help each one in their biggest areas of need.

Overall Success
Making the Grade has been very successful, offering the Boys & Girls Clubs additional supplies, and providing individual help for members. The Club continues to find creative ways to keep members motivated and invested in each other’s success in improving their academic performance.  Learn more about this program at www.bgcnwi.org.


About Horizon
Horizon Bancorp is a locally owned, independent, commercial bank holding company serving Northern and Central Indiana and Southwest and Central Michigan through its commercial banking subsidiary Horizon Bank, NA.  Horizon also offers mortgage-banking services throughout the Midwest. Horizon Bancorp may be reached online at www.horizonbank.com.  Its common stock is traded on the NASDAQ Global Market under the symbol HBNC.

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Contact:  Holly Schoof
Marketing Manager
Phone: (219) 874-9243
Fax:     (219) 873-2628