Boys and Girls Club: Giving youth a brighter future
CORNWALL, Ontario – Providing role models for hundreds of local youth in a safe place is all in a day’s work at the Boys and Girls Club (BGC) of Cornwall/SDG.
At their 506 Clubhouse (on First Street East) staff, board members and volunteers welcomed dozens of guests on Nov. 21. It was a chance to showcase their services and thank the community for incredible support.
“We served 1,552 kids this year. That’s a growth of almost 300 per cent in the last four years,” said Jacquie Richards, BGC executive director.
A variety of after school programs provide kids and teens with homework help, health and wellness tips, physical activities, healthy snacks and the chance to make new friends.
They operate programs out of four different schools, and run eight summer camps throughout Cornwall and the counties.
The BGC teen program offered at the First Street clubhouse has a special lounge ( teens only) with computers, Internet access, music and games. Plus its members have trip opportunities, access to guest speakers and are invited to various dance events.
“I usually come to have fun with a bunch of friends, for volunteer hours and play games,” said Courtney Seguin, 14.
She spends nearly every day at the 506 Clubhouse as a member of the teen program. Seguin also acts as a youth volunteer at BGC for kids in between grades one and six.
Cole Montpetit, 14, another teen program member and youth volunteer loves going there to talk with peers, play pool and reach out to an even younger generation.
“It’s really fun being at the clubhouse and volunteering feels great,” he said.
Richards said the teen program (ages 13 to 18) reflects what the teens of the community actually want. The current demand is for more physical activities. A longboarding program was introduced in the summer with great results. And weekly training tips from Cornwall’s Caveman Strong have also given teens a healthy dose of fun.
“They make the choice to come and sometimes volunteer their hours,” she said.
For more information, visit www. bgccornwallsdg.com.
The Boys and Girls Club (BGC) of Cornwall/SDG have grown over the last four years in a major way. Pictured (left): Jacquie Richards, Boys and Girls Club (BGC) executive director, Courtney Seguin, 14, BGC youth volunteer, Sherry Corden Fairweather, BGC chair, and Cole Montpetit, 14, youth volunteer.