Backside Learning Center
704 Central Ave
Louisville, KY 40208
Our doors opened in June of 2004 thanks to the advocacy of a few visionaries within the Kentucky Derby Museum and Churchill Downs who identified the need to provide educational opportunities and other resources to backside workers. Seeded with an initial grant from Louisville Thoroughbred owners and breeders Richard, Elaine, and Bert Klein, and Bill Casner with WinStar Farm, this initiative began with the renovation of the old racing offices, which still house the BLC. In 2008, an 800-square-feet expansion took place, which was fully funded with in-kind support. Originally the Klein Family Learning Center and Winstar Library and Classrooms, the name was changed to the Backside Learning Center in 2010. Churchill Downs graciously continues to provide our building and its maintenance at no cost.
Since its inception, the BLC has evolved into a comprehensive resource center, providing an array of educational programming, an after school program for the children of backside workers, social services and referrals, and translation and interpretation. Of equal importance, we serve as a community center and a “home away from home” for the nearly 1,000 workers at Churchill Downs racetrack who find themselves far from family and friends.
The Backside Learning Center is a nonprofit organization building community and enriching the lives of backside workers and families at Churchill Downs.
We offer classes and tutoring to help equine workers learn English, pass their GED exams, and obtain U.S. citizenship. Our offsite afterschool Family Education Program provides the children of backside workers with academic support that increases family literacy.
We help equine workers navigate and access resources that enable them to maintain their health and well-being, to become citizens, and to enjoy their lives in Louisville. Our individualized services ensure a personalized and comprehensive approach.
We are a “home away from home” for equine workers who devote seven days a week to caring for racehorses. We maintain a caring and respectful environment that fosters personal and professional growth.