For this week’s Community Conversations, our host ST Billingsley spoke with Branch Director of the Dumfries Boys & Girls Club Judy Moore about the club, and what they offer to children in the community.
Q: So what type of programs do you have at the Boys and Girls club?
A: So we offer a wide range of programming. We offer programming in character leadership development, healthy lifestyles, the arts, sports and recreation and education, and career development. With those programs we break it all down so that there’s things for all the different age groups of the kids that come in to the club.
One of our biggest programs that we have at the club, is our before and after school program. Where we are open in the morning, we open at 6. Mondays we close at 6:30 but the rest of the week we’re up until 8. And we have kids who come in and then we take them to school and pick them up from school. We also offer athletic programming, and we’re now taking registration for our spring athletics, and so this spring we’re offering co-ed basketball, flag football, volleyball, and cheerleading. And that’s for all ages of kids.
The other two things that we offer, throughout the year, is we do a spring break camp and a winter break camp. And then summer camp. So spring break is coming up right around the corner. We’ve already got our spring break camp planned.
We’re going to on two different field trips. One to an eco-park here in Prince William County, and then we’re also going to the Air and Space Museum out by Dulles Airport.
For camps we’re open from 6 to 6:30pm, Monday through Friday. The goal is to offer a safe, fun environment for the kids to come in and just take part in all different kinds of activities.
Q: I still understand that you have a new program that you’re starting.
A: Yes, we do, and I’m really excited about this new program. It’s a program–It’s a computer science first program. We’re in partnership with the company called Symantec, and so they’re going to be coming in and helping us. It’s a program that we’re going to be running with our middle school kids just to give them exposure to the I.T. field and what’s out there.
They will be doing computer programming with a program called…SCRATCH. So they’ll be using a SCRATCH program and building animation and telling a story through computer programming.
Q: So who can be a member at your club?
A: Boys and Girls Club membership is open to youth who are school age. So kindergarten through high school. It’s $50 a year to be a member. Membership runs from September 1st through August 31st. And that’s just for the general membership. The before and after school program and athletics there is an additional fee involved in that.
But to come in and participate in any of those five core program areas that I mentioned–you can come in on your membership.
Q: And can people volunteer to help at the club?
A: Yes, we love volunteers. And we have volunteer coaches who, you know, work with all of our sports leagues. And then we have volunteers who just come in and pick a day of the week and come in. And they’ll be there for the afternoon, just, you know, helping out with the kids and going with the staff in a group. Just being an extra adult.
We also have volunteers who come in and help run specific programs. We are currently looking for more volunteers for this new program. This CS first program that we are getting ready to run, that will be starting the beginning of April. It’s a 10 week program, and then once the first 10 weeks get done we’re going to turn around and offer it again. Hopefully having up to 20 kids in each program.
Check back for next week’s episode of Community Conversations.
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