Youth Programs / Youth Leaders

Mentoring, Leadership, Anti-Bullying, Reading Literacy, Wellness Promotion, Drug and Alcohol Prevention

"It is easier to build strong children than to repair broken men." - Fredrick Douglass


Mission Statement

To provide programs, education, awareness and opportunities that empower children, youth and adults to improve health, wellness and skills for success in school and in life.

Board of Directors


Tara Whitehead


Ebenson Michelin


Valerie Mathijsen-Palay


Melson Maxine

Elena Spottswood

Judy Greenman

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Interested in Keys To Be The Change Programs?

Executive Director:
Heidi Golightly

Heidi Golightly

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Latest News!

Hello Friends and Neighbors:

Thanks for visiting Keys to Be the Change, Inc. We are thrilled to have you wander around our website and take a peek at what we are doing in the community. As you may know, we are a grass roots, 501(c)3, non-profit corporation. We create programs that empower children, youth and adults to thrive in school and in life. We are pleased to announce that we are currently involved in about 500 students lives on a weekly basis here in the Keys. Our mentoring programs along with our Youth Leadership endeavors and our Farm to School Initiatives are being met with great enthusiasm.

We could not do any ot this without the support of the  Monroe County School District, Monroe County Board of County Commissioners, City of Key West, Key West Police Department, and the many community donors, businesses and volunteers who support us every day of the year. We thank you! We are all examples of being the change we wish to see in the world. We are reaching out for donations from our friends and neighbors to help sustain all of our programs for next year. Please feel free to use paypal or send a check to: Keys to Be the Change, Inc.- 1208 Watson Street, Key West, FL  33040. 

Very gratefully yours,

Heidi R. Golightly
Executive Director
Keys to Be the Change, Inc.


Keys To Be The Change (KTBTC) Youth Leaders

photo High school students participate in educational, cultural and skill-building activities that empower them to make positive changes in their lives and in their community. KTBTC student leaders mentor younger children in need of reading assistance, develop and implement anti-bullying program presentations, and coordinate peer to peer alcohol and drug prevention education. Giving back builds self-esteem, self-worth, and self-confidence which empowers youth to make healthy choices.

PeaceJam Leadership Conference

Peace Jam PeaceJam is an international education program built around Nobel Peace Prize Laureates who work personally with youth to pass on the spirit, skills, and wisdom they embody. The goal of PeaceJam is to inspire a new generation of leaders who will transform themselves, their local communities, and the world. is a truly valuable site to visit!

Kids Win: Pathways To Success (KW:PTS)

Kids Win Key West Police Department officers and personnel, the State Attorney’s office, and the United States Coast Guard work with students at Key West High School to provide academic and social mentoring. The mentors meet weekly for 30 minutes to one hour on school property. A program committed to mentoring the youth of today for a brighter tomorrow!

Mentors Optimizing Reading Excellence (M.O.R.E)

More KTBTC student leaders volunteer to work with younger students to improve reading skills and to make reading fun! Students take turns with younger students reading books and discussing the books they have read.

Students Against Destructive Decisions

SADD KTBTC student leaders participate in SADD activities monthly including National Red Ribbon Week, Unity Day, Drunk/Drugged Driving Awareness and other positive activities to promote healthy choices as well as a drug and alcohol free lifestyle.

Monroe County Youth Advisory Council (MCYAC)

MYYAC The Youth Council is made up of four Youth Leaders from each high school in Monroe County. They will be participating in the process of local government by articulating the needs of today's youth. These may include topics such as homelessness, lack of recreational activities, reducing drug and alcohol use among teens as well as statewide environmental concerns such as banning plastic bags in coastal regions.

Farm To School

Farm to school Students meet weekly to plant, water, weed and learn about growing their own food for sustainability purposes as well as healthy eating habits.The students integrate math and science concepts which include growth areas and square footage by plant type, measuring plant growth, calculating time needs for harvesting and learning what nature can do to the process both positive and negative. Students learn the importance of composting, reducing, reusing and recycling.

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