Krystyna K. – Grandmother

The Alive Center is the most wonderful, most amazing place for my grandchildren. I used to wonder why my children chose Alive over other wonderful places. Why do my children all ways scream “We want to go to Alive!” Yesterday I stopped by to see what was going on. I walked in to Alive and was shocked.

A beautiful place, nice and cool with air conditioning, big shelves with books, a large kitchen with snacks and drinks for children, teachers on duty teaching children how to make art work. I see a man supervising boys who are playing games. Near the books is a big shelf with board games, cards and all other sorts of games. I see one of my grandchildren sitting on the carpet playing games and the other one sitting on the couch reading.

Then finally I met the executive director of this amazing place ms. Kandice Henning. She is just an amazing women, with an angel face, who loves children and has lots of ideas. Thanks to her my kids have a safe place to play and meet new people.

Not only does the Alive Center offer fun activities for kids, but it also provides homework help and a nice quiet place to study during the school year. I can’t even imagine for one second if Alive did not exist what would happen to my children they would be outside in the hot sun or just walking on the street in this hot whether.

There are many children with parents that cannot afford to send them on vacation. This is another reason why I am grateful that the Alive Center is here for my kids and and many others. Thank you for creating this safe place for my children!

- Krystyna

Sarah K. – Grandmother

I am a 50-something, single grandmother raising a 12-year old grandson. I recently got a job which has me away from the house from 1:00 to 4:00. It has been a wonderful relief to me to be able to leave him in your capable and trustworthy hands during these hours.

We don’t have kids his age in our neighborhood. He also finds it hard to approach other kids and introduce himself. The relaxed, easygoing atmosphere of the Alive Center has been just the right thing for him. I like that he is able to choose from a variety of activities such as WII or ping pong or arts and crafts. He has had fun with some of the workshops such as pizza cooking and improv class.

Thank you for all you do. I wish you the best in your endeavors.

- Sarah

Andrea – Mother


I wanted to let you know how wonderful my family thinks the Alive Center is for our son. He is at an in-between age at almost 14. He’s feeling a bit too mature for most day camps, not quite ready for overnight camps, not yet old enough to have a paying job, and just happens to have Asperger’s.

We went in search of the impossible… Where can we find a local, safe, interesting, low-cost world expanding space in which he could read, craft, play, or just “hang out” with other kids his age? We found it at Alive’s teen drop in hours, and we were thrilled. And it’s FREE?!? How do people not know about this place?

Part of me feels like sharing it with everyone, and another selfish part wants it to stay the best kept secret in Naperville. Thank you for providing this service to our town. You’ve filled a void, and I am a grateful parent.

- Andrea

Angel A. – Mother

Alive has been a Godsend! Especially when you don’t have nor can afford adequate childcare.  Its also a peace of mind knowing there is a safe place for my children to meet up with friends and make new friends. The help with homework has been awesome especially since math has been changed since I been in school. The staff has been helpful to me with resources and a compassionate heart. Thanks Alive for making this family feel alive!!
- Angel

Nabila Q.

The Alive Center has enabled me to create, lead, and innovate with the Mentorship Program. An idea during a brainstorming session took off with me at the reigns and has ultimately culminated in a very successful program that teens feel supported by. Since the inception of the idea, I’ve had jurisdiction over the program in every way that I am capable. Even in some cases were I felt I was incapable and rose to the empowering occasion, knowing that I had the full support of the Alive Center behind me. With this knowledge, I never felt too overwhelmed, or too stressed out, yet I knew I had open territory for which I could create a program that I felt necessary. Kandice and the Alive Center gave me just enough support to feel encouraged, while still allowing me to lead the program uninhibited. As a teen, it can be discouraging when you feel that you can make no difference in the world at such a young age, that most doors are shut simply because of your age, or because you have no support or guidance to direct you towards your goal. Taking this ideal and spinning it on it’s head, the Alive Center has allowed me to create, lead and innovate with the Mentorship Program every step of the way, and I am so proud.
- Nabila

Jatin M.

Teens have so much potential, yet rarely do they get to use it. Unlike other institutions and organizations, the Alive Center enables teens to do anything they want to! For me personally, I finally get to use my knowledge not to ace a test, but to teach younger students something new about the world around them. The opportunities provided by the Alive Center urge us teens to express our limitless potential, and that is its greatest gift.
- Jatin

Jane B.

The Merry Tutor is a student-led nonprofit tutoring organization. The Alive Center has allowed us to become accessible to the teen population and has given us an environment that encourages creation. Oftentimes, as students, it’s hard to find a place to be taken seriously about what we want to accomplish — The Alive Center has given us this platform. More than anything, The Alive Center has been a role model for us. Whether we need advice about leadership, or grants, or would like a few new ideas, The Alive Center is the place to find it. Everyone there is so supportive and so willing to help us create, lead, and innovate.
- Jane

Alive is a 501c3 nonprofit organization.


We are a nonprofit so that we can serve the entire community regardless of socioeconomic status as well as easily work with other local charities and organizations.

We have teen drop-in hours every day after school and during the summer that are free of charge.  Our teen events are done at cost.  Our adult services – such as meditation, dance, cooking, art – come at a charge but we offer free and reduced classes to the underserved.

Teens and adults can apply for financial aid. Please contact us for more information.