The Road to Great Futures
I had the opportunity to have breakfast with Denzel Washington in Chicago during our National Boys & Girls Club Conference this past spring. It's been a lifelong dream of mine to meet him, not only because he's an amazing actor, but because his passionate advocacy for Club youth is so inspiring. He attributes his Club experience to choosing a different path from his peers, one that he wouldn't have known was possible without the Club. It's a familiar theme I've heard before. And seen in action at our Clubs.
Our Club members are not famous actors or athletes or entrepreneurs, yet, but they are on their way. Like Denzel, if you ask them, they will tell you what coming to the Club after school means to them. It means the difference between falling behind in school and having structured time to work on homework with a mentor. Or the difference between going hungry and having a reliable meal after school. For our youngest members all the way to teens and those in Juvenile Hall, we strive to provide Club programs that help them envision where they want to go and how to get there.
I am also excited about the road ahead of us as an organization. Opening three beautiful new Club locations in Woodland, Stockton, and Rancho Cordova will allow us to serve over 5,200 Club members and other youth annually. By serving more youth, more often we increase the opportunities they have to learn skills and life lessons to take with them on their road to Great Futures. Hearing our local Club alumni tell us “the Club helped me get to where I am today” is an incredible honor. I have no doubt that I will be just as excited to sit at a breakfast with our Club members one day as I was for meeting Denzel.
This journey is truly amazing and I am thankful that you are part of it.