TriCity Family Services

1120 Randall Court
Geneva, IL 60134

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Compass for Boys — FAQ

Is Compass for Boys a new program?

In 2017, HGNA, a nonprofit organization in Downers Grove that is now named Navigate Adolescence, created a program for 4th and 5th-grade boys, called HEROES.  The HEROES curriculum has been updated and renamed Compass for Boys: Finding Your Way.

What is Navigate Adolescence?

Navigate Adolescence, Inc., (formerly Helping Girls Navigate Adolescence, Inc.), is a nonprofit organization (located in Downers Grove) devoted to providing kids and their parents the tools needed to navigate adolescence with confidence, resilience, and kindness. HGNA changed its name to reflect that they are now offering programs for boys and for girls.

Will boys and girls be in groups and activities together at Compass?

Compass for Boys and Compass for Girls are both being offered on February 1, 2020 (with a rescheduling date of Feb. 8, 2020, in case of extreme weather conditions) at Geneva Middle School South. However, they are SEPARATE PROGRAMS with different curricula designed specifically for boys and for girls.   Males will facilitate the Compass for Boys program.   High school volunteers assisting with any groups for boys will be high school boys.  Females will facilitate the Compass for Girls program.  High school volunteers assisting with any groups for girls will be high school girls.

When is the registration deadline for Compass?

Registration for Compass will close at 11:59pm on Tuesday, January 21, 2020.

Please note, however, that early registration is encouraged as it allows us greater lead-time in hiring facilitators and recruiting volunteers, and gives us greater leverage in negotiating discounts for food and supplies — adding to the overall success of the event, while keeping costs to a minimum. 

What does the Compass registration fee include? 

Your $35* Compass registration fee includes: four 75-minute break-out sessions with discussions, games, and activities led by professional facilitators discussing topics surrounding social and emotional subjects such as friendships, self-discovery, and self-care.  Additionally, each boy will receive a t-shirt, a drawstring bag, a snack and lunch!

*Please note:  Fee reductions are available based on need.

 What is the refund policy?

A full refund will be provided for cancellations made by Tuesday, January 21, 2020.  

What time does check-in begin for Compass and the Parent Presentation?

Check-in for Compass is between 8:30 and 9:00am.  The Parent Presentation starts at 9:15am.  Both are at Geneva Middle School SOUTH.

Can I register my son for Compass the day of the event?

Once registration closes, a significant amount of work goes into balancing class sizes with facilitators, printing schedules that are unique to each boy, as well as purchasing and organizing materials by facilitated session.  Due to the complexity and energy that goes into these tasks, unfortunately, we cannot accommodate on-site registration.

Can I register for the Parent Presentation the day of the event?

YES.  Walk-in registrations for the Parent Presentation are welcome and encouraged for anyone who finds availability in their schedule at the last minute.

Can my son arrive late to and/or leave early from Compass for Boys?

For your son to fully benefit from the many aspects of the workshop and to avoid disruptions to your son’s group, we strongly recommend that your son attend the entire event.

Can my son be in the same group as his friend(s)?

We recognize and appreciate the fact that most boys feel uncomfortable attending an event where they will not be paired up with a friend.  While there is a chance that your son may be in the same group with a friend, our goal is to give the boys the opportunity to practice building rapport with boys he is meeting for the first time.  And rest assured that from the moment the boys arrive in their first session, our high school volunteers and trained, professional facilitators will be working their magic to help your son feel at ease.

Additionally, to foster friendships and enhance the overall experience, your son will remain with the same group throughout the day: learning, sharing thoughtful reflection, and addressing common age-related social and emotional challenges – that will help to build the bond of friendship.

That said, all boys will be together during the Ice Breaker/Opening Ceremony, at lunch, and during the closing, so your son will have opportunities to reconnect with friends during the day.

Please note that if your son is feeling great resistance upon arriving, we encourage you to discretely tell a Compass staff member so that we can have a facilitator meet briefly with your son to allay any fears he may have.

What should my son bring to the event?

To avoid lost or left-behind belongings, we ask that your son LEAVE ALL personal items including a backpack and CELL PHONE at HOME.  Please note that the organizers will have cell phones available in the case of an emergency.

Water will be provided; however, if your son prefers, he is welcome to bring a water bottle to the event with his name clearly marked on the bottle.

What if my son has special dietary needs? 

Unfortunately, we cannot accommodate special dietary needs beyond vegetarian options.  We will be trying to offer a gluten-free option.  If your son requires a special meal, he may bring a meal from home and drop it off upon arrival in the Facilitator’s Lounge next to the check-in area.  Please be advised that a peanut-free snack will be served during the event.

Any questions can be addressed by emailing us at and we will do our best to be of assistance.

What are the qualifications of the facilitators that will be working with my son?

We carefully hand pick each facilitator based on their professional qualifications and their affinity to our mission of raising emotionally healthier adolescent boys.

We prioritize our recruitment of licensed and/or certified professionals, including social workers, counselors, psychologists, and therapists from local school districts — with the objective of familiarizing our boys with these important and safe go-to people that they can readily speak to during the school year.  We also invite men with experience leading and teaching groups of young boys to apply to facilitate for Compass for Boys.

How many boys will be in my son’s class?

In order to give the boys the best experience possible, we limit each 75-minute facilitated session to a maximum of 12 boys, except for the “East” section with stress-relief techniques, which may combine groups.  We have found that the smaller groups allow the facilitators to address issues in great detail, and gives each boy time to participate in discussions, games, and activities.

I have a high school-age son who would like to volunteer … how can he get involved?

Supporting our vision of raising emotionally healthier boys, with each event we strive to provide leadership opportunities for boys, such as managing icebreakers, assisting with small group discussions and activities, and role modeling.  Specifically, we look for energetic high school boys who model positive, respectful behavior.  If your son is interested in volunteering, please have him email TriCity Family Services’ Director of Emotional Wellness Programs, Michelle Clark, at with the following information:

  • Full name
  • Name of high school
  • Cell phone number and email address

Who runs Compass?

Compass for Boys is brought to you by TriCity Family Services and the Geneva Coalition for Youth with the support of Geneva CUSD 304.  The Compass program was created by Navigate Adolescence, a not-for-profit organization in Downers Grove.  This event is made possible through the tireless efforts of local parents, high school and middle school students, and community members who volunteer their time for the greater good of our sons and our communities.

How can I contact the organizer with any questions?

For questions or concerns, please contact Michelle Clark, TriCity Family Services Director of Emotional Wellness Programs, at or at 630-232-1070, ext. 336.

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Main Office:

1120 Randall Court, Geneva, IL 60134


Monday – Thursday 9am-9pm
Fridays 9am-5pm
Saturdays by appointment only

Satellite Office:

2570 Foxfield Road, Suite 101, St. Charles, IL 60174


By appointment only

Phone: 630.232.1070          Fax: 630.232.1471

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