Mission and History

Mission

Our mission is to promote personal and social wellness through educational, recreational, and social programs.

Our goal is to give children, youth, and families the life-building skills necessary for a healthy and productive future.

Our programs provide fun and enriching activities year-round for children, teens, and adults.

History

King Street Center was born of meager resources amidst tremendous need in the heart of Burlington, Vermont. With a few dedicated parents, a group of volunteers from the University of Vermont, and a budget of $90, the program began in a van parked next to the King Street Laundromat in 1971. Our mission was to provide community-based support for children and their families through educational and recreational programs.

Over the years the number of children served, the structure of the programs and the sources of funding have all changed. The neighborhood also has shifted, with many new buildings sprouting up in recent years. But at its core King Street remains a working class neighborhood with one of the highest concentrations of subsidized housing units in the state. The neighborhood has also become one of the most diverse communities in Vermont, and dozens of immigrant and refugee families now call King Street “home.”

In 2009 we dropped “Youth” from our name to become simply King Street Center. We believe the new name more accurately reflects our mission and our work, which is to provide integrated, long-term services to both children and families in the Burlington area.

Today

King Street Center serves over 500 children and families each year. Programs include a Toddler and Preschool program for 1-5 year-olds; an Afterschool program for children in grades K through 5; Teen Futures, our innovative program for middle and high school students; an evening drop-in program for teens; several mentoring programs for children of all ages; and much more.

Thanks to a successful $5.1 million capital campaign, King Street Center was able to build & renovate a new facility at 87 King Street. We opened our doors to this bright, light new building in January 2015. It was designed by TruexCullins Architects and built by Engelberth Construction.