National Boys & Girls Club Week is March 7-12, 2016. Our 14 Club sites across Lawrence are creating #GreatFutures as we speak. Over the span of five days, we get to celebrate the different ways our staff, our programs and our kids are making an impact in Lawrence.
Day One: Open the door to academic success
One of our most important targeted programs is Power Hour, a daily academic assistance time where our Club kids can finish their homework before they go home! Between providing help with homework to creating awesome incentive goals for each assignment completed, we find a way to make homework fun! No homework? No problem! We are prepared with “Power Hour Tubs” that are filled with academic games to keep those minds working.
Day Two: Open the Door to Teens
National Boys & Girls Club Week continues with #TeenTuesday! While we have elementary Clubs in 13 of the elementary schools in Lawrence, our Teen Center at 1520 Haskell is our building. That means when school is out – the Club is in! Whether it be days off of school, spring break or summer vacation, the Teen Center is hopping! We serve the building’s max capacity of 70 kids per day.
Space can be tight, but our teens and the staff are resourceful! Each of the four middle schools has their own group for Power Hour to help kids have the chance to work together. Our Teen Center Program Manager, Ms. Tasha, communicates with teachers from each school to make sure homework is getting completed at the Club. Don’t worry, we know how to have a good time, too! Our teens have a talented dance club, basketball team, art club and are committed community service leaders! You can routinely find our teens in the elementary Clubs reading to younger kids or working as Jr. Staff members. Our Great Futures Start Here campaign is hard at work raising money to build a new Teen Center that will serve five times as many teens!
Day Three: Open the Door to Good Character
Celebrating good character and citizenship is the Wednesday focus of #BGCWeek. This is one of our most important priority outcomes as our mission is to create productive, caring, responsible citizens. The Lawrence community generously supports us through donating time and funds, and it’s important to us that we show our appreciation through service.
Boys & Girls Club has two community main services programs: Torch Club (elementary) and Keystone Club (teens) and both are dedicated to creating good character through academic success, career preparation and community service. This school year, we’ve seen awesome community service projects in our Clubs like the water drive to help Flint, Michigan, a food drive and delivery to Heartland Community Healthcare Centers, collecting hundreds of pounds of food for Just Food, making Christmas cards for our military members overseas and much more!
Day Four: Open the Door to Healthy Lifestyles
Our commitment to fitness and smart choices is exactly what today’s #BGCWeek celebration is all about. Healthy lifestyles are practiced everyday at the Club, including targeted programs like Triple Play (a game plan for the mind, body and soul) and SMART Moves (prevention/education program about drugs, alcohol). The healthy choices we present at the Club goes far beyond a good diet as it also ensures kids have mentors to talk with about positive relationships, how to handle negative influences and mental and emotional health. #BGCWeek
Healthy snacks, like fruit, cheese and veggies are an everyday habit. Exercising is no different. Creativity runs wild when it comes to physical activity at the Club. From classics like tag and kickball to inventions like ball tag (where the floor is lava, of course) to crab-walking relay races, the power of teamwork and getting bodies in motion is a great combination. To top it all off, Boys & Girls Club of Lawrence has its own volleyball and basketball leagues. Every elementary Club site has a team, which holds regular practices to prepare for games. Wednesdays are gamedays in which all families are invited to come watch.
Day Five: Open the Door. Take a Tour.
On the final day of National Boys & Girls Club Week, BGCA has asked that all Clubs across the country invite their communities inside for a tour. Thanks to the terrific support we receive everyday in Lawrence, we hosted community tours from October to March and you took us up on our offer to see #GreatFutures in the making. We are thankful for your unwavering support and for allowing us to work with your kids. We wouldn’t be here without you.
Until next year, Happy #BGCAWeek!