UNION COUNTY, NJ - Thirty teens and six advisors from the Boys and Girls Clubs of Union County attended this year’s National Keystone Conference in Chicago, one of the largest groups from New Jersey and the nation at the conference.

Teens attended the College, Career and Workforce Development Expo on bullying, drug & alcohol abuse, sexual health, conflict management, peer pressure, mental health, coding, time management, gun violence and LGBTQ awareness. There were fitness competitions, an obstacle course, fundraising seminars, hip-hop dance classes, a creative improve session and a “Keystone’s Got Talent” talent show.

An Elizabeth Club member, Shadon, was selected to participate in a group performance with others from around the nation.  There was a games room and dance for the teens, as well as many other interactive activities. Keystoners also participated in a community-wide service project.  This year they sorted and packaged donations at the Cornerstone Community Center.

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The Keystone Club is a teen leadership club for youth ages 14-18. Members participate in character, leadership, career preparation and community activities. Each year, there is a National Keystone Conference, where teens from all over the world come together to engage and socialize with peers, explore teen issues relevant to their lives, and develop skills to support and enhance service and leadership efforts in their Clubs and communities. These teens are leaders and ambassadors in their Clubs and communities in the following Keystone focus areas: academic success, career exploration, community service projects and teen outreach.

The conference has three main focus areas: Activism, Teen Voice, and Legacy.