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  • Our program grew to 130 students at Valencia Middle School.
  • We had 70 U of A Volunteers 
  • We raised $105,000 to expand our program
  • Jujutsu & tackle football were added to our recreational activities offered
  • Higher Ground Partnered with St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church
  •  Hired 2 full-time staff members
  • Held our first summer program
  • Sent 5 students to compete in their first jujutsu tournament 
  • 100% of the parents stated that their child learned to have positive attitude and behavior towards school and life in general upon attending Higher Ground.


  •  93% of parents feel that attending Higher Ground has increased their child's potential success for their future.
  • 90% of our students enjoy coming to the Youth Center.
  • 90% of the students who attend our program increase their grades and school attendance compared to the school year prior to attending our program.
  • 60% of our students become honor rolls students for the 1st time


  • We raised $13,000 to support Higher Ground
  • Higher Ground solidified a partnership with U of A and we grew to 50 Life Changers. 
  • Maintained our previous level of students. 
  • Higher Ground became a registered 501c3 nonprofit.
  • In March of the school year, we moved to a wing at Valencia Middle School where we had 6 classrooms to continue/grow our program. 
  • We added boxing as a recreational activity choice for our students.
  • We had a Reading with Grandma program which allowed students to go on field trips all over Arizona. 
  • Reading is a key factor in students' learning. If students are not in their reading level and are not interested to read by 4th grade, it is already too late to catch them up. 93% of the parents saw positive improvement in their child's interest in reading and reading level. 80% of our elementary students who participated in our reading program increased their interest in reading books.
  • The number one factor for dropping out is a negative attitude and a lack of interest in school. At Higher Ground, 87% of our parents saw an improvement in their child's interest in school and attendance in school, and saw improvement attitude towards academics drastically reducing the risk of students dropping out of school.
  • 100% of our students feel that attending Higher Ground has helped them perform better at school. 
  • 86% of our students feel that we have helped them effectively with their homework.
  • 86% of the parents strongly agreed that their students showed great improvement in their academic performance upon attending Higher Ground.


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  • Higher Ground started a partnership with United Way
  • We started a conversation with Pima County about youth issues in Tucson.  
  • Maintained 60 students in our program with a waiting list of 30 students.  
  • We started a partnership with the U of A for student volunteers  
  • Dance became a recreational activity in partnership with Pistor Middle School.  


  • Featured on KOLD News 13 for being a quality after school program in Tucson.
  • Higher Ground offered a free after school program to the community.  
  • We had an integrated reading program & offered flag football and art. 
  • Started a partnership with Pima County
  • Maintained a waiting list of 30 students


    • Higher Ground began at Mission View Assembly in partnership with Pistor Middle School.
    • Started with 60 students and over 10 volunteers from the community. 
    • Higher Ground offered homework tutoring and recreational activities to our students.