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Jul 27, 2020

Keeping children safe and supported during COVID

Boys & Girls Clubs of St. Charles County (BGCSTC) began its annual Summer Blast Program on June 2, 2020 to provide a safe, fun, and educational place for children to go now that school is out of session. The Summer Blast Program is operating at both locations. Encouraging learning is always a top priority for us but we have used the COVID closure as a time to expand virtual programming, create a summer program, and provide social/emotional support for families. 

Safety is a top concern for Boys & Girls Club staff, who are working diligently to implement proper health and safety protocols in alignment with CDC recommendations. Children and staff have their temperature checked before they enter the building and at least one other time throughout the day. 

Our Staff did a wonderful job providing virtual programming, online mentoring, and check-in phone calls for members during our closure. It has been wonderful having our kiddos back with us and we are seeing increased demand for services. We have received multiple requests for summer scholarships and are proactively seeking this kind of support to help our kids during this challenging time. 

Below is an urgent email request I received regarding a high risk family situation. We got to work quickly and now have a system ready to begin supporting this child in less than 3 days. This is why summer blast scholarships are important. Thanks to emergency COVID funding from the community, summer blast scholarships, and collaboration between our units we were able to quickly respond to a critical need for this family and in particular, this 10 yr. old.

Hi Karen,

I hope that you are doing well.  I am writing on behalf of one of our therapists who is working with a 10 year old in St. Peters who is in a high risk situation being home alone for 12 hours every day due to mom being hospitalized for surgery and radiation treatment for the next 6 weeks and mom’s boyfriend working 2 jobs to make ends meet.  Mom also has a newborn who is also with her in the hospital.  We are wondering about any camps or programs that you may have scholarships still available that she could participate in?  Transportation would also be needed for her.  Is there someone I could connect the therapist with who could help?  - Cara M. I Senior Director

Above is one example of the needs we work to meet, each and every day. Over the past month since re-opening, we’ve worked with the Division of Children’s Services more than ever as we encountered children returning to our club struggling with neglect and abuse. I am proud of our staff’s dedication to doing whatever it takes for these kids. 

Please consider providing summer blast scholarships or a gift to support our academic programs such as Reading for Success. These gifts are put into action immediately. Our children need a safe, clean, fun space to come each day where they receive meals, high quality programs, learning opportunities focused on keeping them in school, and support from trained staff. 

Links:

Jul 6, 2020

Putting STEAM to work to help with COVID-19

The Boys & Girls Clubs of St. Charles County closed its doors on March 13th due to COVID-19. We re-opened on June 2nd for a modified schedule and summer program. During the 3-month gap, we worked hard to keep our members engaged. In addition to the meals sent home each week and weekly phone call check-ins, we wanted to provide our kids with activities to help keep their minds engaged. To that end, we began an online program called My Future where our members could participate in virtual learning activities heavily focused on technology, math, and science. Our members earned badges for creating sessions including lessons on Digital Literacy, STEM exploration, and DIY stem. In addition, we created a YouTube channel called VISION BGCSTC where our members could participate in activities led by our staff including mentoring, dance, physical activity and so on.

We are most proud, however, of the work our older members accomplished. BGCSTC proudly worked alongside the health department and the economic development department to create PPE components for an area hospital. Working in shifts at the Club, our older members and staff utilized the 3-D printer to create pieces for the PPE. The printer ran around the clock at times and we are proud to have been a part of this critical community collaboration, thanks to STEAMbotics Academy and our dedicated staff and members. 

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Mar 30, 2020

Responding to community need

Feeding our families
Feeding our families

Uncertain, scary, adjusting to a new normal ...We are a community of people who continue to serve our children and families.

This is not a grant update I ever anticipated sending. Please know, we continue to be committed to our mission and to our children. 

The Boys & Girls Clubs of St. Charles County are:

  • Staff who are leaving their own families to come sanitize units, shop for critical supplies, prepare activity kits, and feed our member families.
  • Youth Development Professionals who are providing daily emotional support and tangible resources to children and families, reminding us all that those in poverty are hit exponentially harder in a crisis like this.
  • Prevention staff who are connecting services and resources for children of all ages and their families, at a time when anxiety is through the roof and family tensions are high.
    Unit Directors who are working to support staff and provide additional opportunities for our hourly employees understanding they are facing financial loss.
  • Administrative team members working behind the scenes to support all of us.
  • Board of Directors who are donating backpacks, food, personal hygiene items and learning materials to further support our families.

I am incredibly proud of our community. 

For now, our units are closed in accordance with COVID-19 recommendations. We will do our part to keep our community, staff, and children safe. We look forward to hearing the sounds of laughter, love, and learning again soon. 

In partnership, 

Karen Englert

Chief Executive Officer

Sending our love
Sending our love

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