Squad members show a visiting group how to form a human pyramid. Photo: Nora Schultz

Squad members show a visiting group how to form a human pyramid. Photo: Nora Schultz

Mission & vision

Trenton Circus Squad inspires young people to take big leaps in life. Youth from inner-city Trenton and surrounding suburbs learn how to cooperate, push themselves and serve their community – all through the astonishing practice of circus arts.

Circus arts are challenging. They require focus, teamwork, and a lot of discipline to make daring pursuits possible. Circus arts spur personal expression and deep connections too. That’s why they are a proven, effective way to foster self-reliance and confidence in young people.

Circus Squad teens tap into the wonder and tradition of circus to develop their own identities in a peer community. The circus ring is a place of belonging where Squad members feel safe. They practice physical skills that improve health and well-being, learn life skills that help them achieve, and build trust with teens from other neighborhoods through shared experiences.
Trenton Circus Squad members lead community engagement in the arts, becoming role models themselves. Younger children and families can join in workshops and performances and complete the circle. All together, it’s an often breathtaking experience filled with exercise, learning and joyful laughter for kids of all ages.

The Trenton Circus Squad founders' vision is that the young people who form the Squad will:

  • become role models for younger youth in their community

  • enrich their communities through joy-inspiring performance

  • commit to making a long term difference in their community

  • develop the relationships and skills they need to achieve their goals, for themselves, their families and their community

Read more about our Mission in Action


FUrther information

Read our strategic plan, including planned program outcomes.

Read and watch some testimonials.

Download our brochure: page 1, page 2

Review program outcomes.

For details on how our program design leads to intended outcomes, review our logic model.

Review our prior year tax return here.