Archive for the ‘Education’ Category

Club provides ‘fun with a purpose’ . . .

Message from Executive Director, Mike Wurm 

Summer time is here! It has been an incredible start to what is sure to be an exciting and fun filled summer. At most of our seven Summer Camp sites, Clubs have opened to record numbers and we are only three weeks into the session! Staff have worked hard to put together a ‘Fun with a Purpose,’ action packed summer. At the Boys & Girls Club of Truckee Meadows, we keep kids learning throughout the year, so when summer is over, they are ready to go back to school without losing any learning momentum. Please take a moment to read in this newsletter, how our Summer BRAIN GAIN Program combats summer learning loss through intentional programming.

This June also marked the one year anniversary of the opening of the William N. Pennington Facility on Foster Drive. The staff at our newest facility has done a tremendous job of building a program the kids love to attend. Daily over 500 children and teens participate in a variety of programs and activities designed to keep them engaged and interested. We are thankful for the Pennington Foundation as well as the many other local foundations, corporations and individuals for supporting this project. After only one year there is no doubt this was a necessary and needed addition to the community.

Also, our mission to ‘reach the kids that need us most’ continues in our newest project. Over a year ago, we took over the operations of the Project Solution property on Bresson Avenue in Reno. Currently, we are exploring options to convert this property into a Boys & Girls Club. While much work has to be done, this facility has the potential to have the same impact on its community as the facility on Foster Drive has had. Please look for future information on how you may be able to help with this much needed project.

Again, please take a few minutes to look through the July addition of the Club Chronicle. I think you will be happy to see how your support is changing lives every day in the Truckee Meadows!

Summer Brain Gain keeps kids on track

What Happens to Kids Over the Summer?

Summer Learning Each summer in America, an estimated 43 million children in the U.S. miss out on expanded learning opportunities that could prevent them from falling behind. During summer, most youth lose about two months’ worth of math skills. Low-income youth also lose more than two months’ worth of reading skills, while their middle-class peers make slight gains.

Summer learning losses can stack up from year to year, causing low-income children to fall further and further behind, ultimately endangering their chances of high school graduation. More than half of the achievement gap between lower- and higher-income youth can be explained by unequal access to summer learning opportunities.

Close the Achievement Gap

Boys & Girls Club of Truckee Meadows is committed to ensuring that area youth, especially those who need us most, graduate from high school on time with a plan for the future. That’s why we, in collaboration with Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA), launched Summer Brain Gain—a summer learning loss prevention program developed specifically for Boys & Girls Clubs that allows our organization to integrate educational activities into our traditional summer schedule.

Summer Brain Gain is comprised of one-week modules with fun, themed activities for elementary, middle and high school students. Supported by Disney, each module takes a project-based learning approach: youth engage in a process of learning through discovery, creative expression, group work and a final project or production. A large emphasis of each module incorporates elements from STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) education that are appealing and interactive for members.  As a result, kids develop higher-order thinking skills through the Summer Brain Gain modules while staying on track for the coming school year.

For more information about the Club’s Summer Brain Gain program please contact Casey Rogers, Director Program Development at (775) 360-2452 or email.

Maureena Jacinto named Cyber Safe Futures Ambassador

Maureena JacintoMaureena Jacinto, Club member and Leader in Training program participant at the Donald W. Reynolds Facility was recently named by Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA) as a Cyber Safe Futures (CSF) Ambassador, funded by Sprint. Maureena will receive an honorarium of $500 for serving as the youth voice for cyber safety-related topics like cyberbullying, social networking, online privacy and mobile safety. Maureena will serve as a CSF Ambassador through August 31, 2015.

In her role as a CSF Ambassador Maureena will develop cyber safety content for myclubmylife.com (BGCA’s website for Club teens) and for CyberSafeFutures.org (BGCA’s public-facing safety resource website). The content may include questions for cyber safety teen polls, messaging for media safety video messages for teens, and answering cyber safety questions from parents during the month of June.

Way to go Maureena!

Let’s get ready for summer . . .

Message from Executive Director, Mike Wurm 

BGC_group Summer is fast approaching, and things are really starting to come together for a great Out of School Time experience for the kids of Northern Nevada. At this time of year, Boys & Girls Clubs in Northern Nevada and North and South Lake Tahoe come together to plan exciting programs, activities and experiences for your children. Over the summer we will apply strategies to support schools in their quest to educate our kids by using Summer GAIN Strategies that help guide children through fun, educational activities that will prepare them to start the new school year in August 2015.

Recently, the Boys & Girls Club of Truckee Meadows has been seeing nearly 2,500 kids per day between 20 sites stretching from Cold Springs all the way to Fernley. The summer numbers promise to be higher than ever with the William N. Pennington Facility celebrating its one year anniversary in June. A facility you may not have heard as much about, the Project Solution Facility on Bresson Avenue is also approaching a milestone of its own. A year ago this June, the Boys & Girls Club took over day-to-day operations at Project Solution, bringing full service Club programming to a very deserving community.  The Club continues to explore opportunities with this facility, and we believe this will lead to even better program and activity opportunities for the kids of Libby Booth Elementary, Veterans Elementary and Vaughn Middle School. Be sure to keep an eye out for more information in the months ahead.

Finally, the biggest change kids and parents may see will occur in the Fall of 2015. When the traditional school year begins in August, the Boys & Girls Club of Truckee Meadows will be instituting a weekly fee at our Clubhouses: Donald W. Reynolds, William N. Pennington, Neil Road, Lemmon Valley and Project Solution facilities. Much like the fees currently charged at school sites and the summer program, no child will be turned away from services at any Club because of an inability to pay. In fact, even though we have had summer fees since 1995, we estimate more than 65 percent of the children who use our Clubs today pay no fees or have fees significantly reduced so they can participate in our programs.

Please know we have conducted parent focus groups, had numerous staff discussions and had extensive discussions about the shift to fees with our board of directors all in an effort to make this transition as smooth as possible. Also, please know the fees generated will be used to help continue to improve services to kids by hiring additional program staff and providing even more opportunities for our kids. In addition to afterschool program fees, we also are employing numerous other strategies to continue to increase resources, like growing our board of directors, adding a fundraising community board, increasing existing special events and exploring new grant opportunities. All of these efforts will help us to continue to grow existing Club sites and explore new opportunities in the future.

Please take the time to read through the May E-Newsletter and learn about some new and creative programming such as our Teeny Tots Sports and Junior Giants programs. We appreciate you, and because of your support, we continue to serve those in our community who need it the most… the kids.