The story of the Cormier Youth Center traces its roots back to 1994 when Andover was reeling from the suicides of three young people within one year. The town decided to invest in a long-term youth development program to address the issues facing young people and hired the new Andover Youth Services Director - Bill Fahey. From that humble beginning, young people have become partners with AYS and sought ways express to their voice in the community. The youth have always dreamed big and sought a place that they could call their own – a youth center.
For more than 20 years, the AYS kept the eye on the prize and stood alongside the young people of Andover holding signs, attending meetings, and advocating for the youth center. With the help of the Andover Youth Foundation, AYS raised over $5 million privately for the Cormier Youth Center through generous private donations, road races, tree lots, memorial gifts, and grants. At Special Town Meeting on December 5, 2011 over 2,000 voters packed the Collins Center and approved $2 million in taxpayer funds. Powered by the young people and supported by the citizens, the dream of a Youth Center would finally be a reality.