Comcast to Bring Positive Change to Monroe Club

On Saturday, April 25, more than 175 local Comcast NBCUniversal employees and their families, friends and community partners will “make change happen” as they volunteer to improve the Monroe Boys & Girls Club as part of the 14th annual Comcast Cares Day. Comcast Cares Day, which takes place each April during National Volunteer Month, is Comcast NBCUniversal’s companywide celebration of their year-round commitment to service and the nation’s largest single-day corporate volunteer effort in the country.

This year, volunteers will participate in a range of projects at the Monroe Club intended to revamp and upgrade the Club, including: painting the interior of the building (excluding the gym), cleaning the interior and exterior of the building, building new storage cubbies, and landscaping which may include new fencing, raised garden beds and picnic tables.

“I think the kids will be able to take pride in their new Club.  They have been asking for a “refresh” and this is an opportunity to show them that we are listening and their opinions matter.  I think others who may not come to the Club on a regular basis will see this as a new, modern hangout for kids.  This will be [a place] they will be more excited about coming to” expressed newly appointed Monroe Club Unit Director, Jeff Rasmussen.

In addition to Comcast Cares Day, through a partnership between The Comcast Foundation and United Way Worldwide, the Club will also be receiving a $25,000 grant to help kids get active and healthy. The grant includes technology to help the Club become a central hub for running a program using Sqord. Sqord utilizes a watch-like device and encourages kids to be physically active and helps them remain so by connecting with their peers and engaging in fitness challenges.

“We’re proud to partner with the Boys & Girls Clubs of Snohomish County to bring resources to the Monroe Club during our 14th Comcast Cares Day,” said Steve Kipp, Vice President for External Affairs of Comcast in Washington. “Our employees are looking forward to supporting them through a day of volunteering. And the Sqord program, launching in Monroe, is a great way of combining our digital literacy initiatives with United Way’s health and wellness efforts. We’re excited for the benefits this program can have for Monroe youth and the whole community.”

Pictures of the event will be posted on the Boys & Girls Clubs of Snohomish County website (bgcsc.org) and Facebook following the event to showcase the work of volunteers and the new Club renovations.

Village Green Invites Community to New Center Groundbreaking

KCC Rendering (4)Kingston, WA – On Sunday, May 3rd, at 4:00 p.m. the Village Green Foundation will turn the first shovels of dirt marking the start of construction of the long awaited 23,000 square foot Community Center in Kingston. Construction will take about ten months. The new center will house a Boys & Girls Club, Kitsap Regional Library branch, a senior center and community meeting space. “We could not be more thrilled to be at this point,” said Board President, Mary McClure. “It’s been a long and at times difficult journey, but watching the community come together in support of this effort has been one of the most inspiring experiences of my life.”

What started more than 12 years ago as a grassroots effort to replace the existing, aging, Community Center, has grown into a full service center offering programs and a gathering place for citizens of all ages. The effort has been led by a dedicated board of 12 community volunteers, who committed time, talent and more than $600,000 of their own money to ensure the center would be built. With a commitment to sustainability, the Village Green Municipal Park District (MPD) was established in 2010 to pay for the ongoing operating expenses for the facility.

“It’s the breadth of community engagement in this project that has continued to propel it forward,” said Bobbie Moore, MPD Commissioner and Board liaison to the Village Green Foundation. “It’s been the ultimate do-it-yourself project, and yet has had help from a rich variety of partners – a true community effort”. “We are excited that this long-held dream is on its way to becoming a reality and that Kingston will have a wonderful library designed to reflect this growing community, ” said Kitsap Regional Library Director, Jill Jean.

“We appreciate the opportunity to be part of this important and needed project for the community which benefits both kids and adults, and we thank the donors that contributed to help make it happen,” said Snohomish County Boys & Girls Club President / CEO, Bill Tsoukalas.

The building will be built by local construction company Tim Ryan Construction. The Groundbreaking is open to the public and will take place at 4:00 p.m. Sunday, May 3rd at the Village Green Park.

Groundbreaking Schedule of events:
3:45 Guests Arrive
4:00 Groundbreaking ceremony
4:30 Groundbreaking – photos; kids & dignitaries with shovels
4:45 Apple pie & coffee at the picnic pavilion

CONTACT:
Daniel Johnson
(206) 293-4823
Danielrjohnson4@gmail.com

BGCSC Receives the Gift of Sharing from Macy’s!

Macy's Thanks for SharingMacy’s, for its twelfth year, announced that together with its customers, the Thanks For Sharing holiday campaign has raised more than $1 million to support Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA). This year, over $18,000 of that was given to the Boys & Girls Clubs of Snohomish County!

Boys & Girls Clubs of America and Macy’s share the belief that out-of-school time is an important factor in the overall education equation. The retailer’s donation to Boys & Girls Clubs of Snohomish County will ensure a great future for the community’s young people.

Through Macy’s Thanks for Sharing holiday campaign, shoppers are encouraged to charge a one-time enrollment fee of $25 to their Macy’s credit card, with a portion going directly to benefit BGCSC. Plus, customers receive a 10 percent reward on their credit card purchases.

Building on a more than 150-year tradition, and with the collective support of customers and employees, Macy’s helps strengthen communities by supporting local and national charities giving more than $70 million each year to help make a difference in the lives of our customers.

A big thanks to Macy’s and their cardholders who helped make #ThanksForSharing a huge success and supported our local Clubs!

2014 Youth of the Year Winner Announced

Selected from 18 outstanding local youth from Snohomish, Island, and Kitsap Counties, Erika R. Aguilar of Oak Harbor was named the Boys & Girls Clubs of Snohomish County 2014 YOUTH OF THE YEAR at an Awards Dinner on Thursday, January 29 at Rosehill Community Center in Mukilteo. Erika had already been named the Oak Harbor Club Youth of the Year. Although Oak Harbor is in Island County, the Club is one of 19 under the Boys & Girls Clubs of Snohomish County (BGCSC) umbrella. Erika was awarded a $1,500 scholarship.

Erika 2x3The Youth of the Year program begins at the Club level as each BGCSC Club selects their Youth of the Month. A finalist from each Club competes to become the BGCSC Youth of the Year. Being named Youth of the Year is the highest honor a Boys & Girls Club member can obtain. As Boys & Girls Clubs of America’s premier youth recognition program, Youth of the Year recognizes outstanding contributions to a member’s family, school, community and Boys & Girls Club, as well as overcoming personal challenges and obstacles. Youth of the Year encourages Club members to reach their full potential by achieving academic success, leading healthy lifestyles and contributing to their communities. Youth of the Year honorees are living proof that great futures start at the Boys & Girls Club.

“Erika started off as a Club member in 6th grade. She has grown from someone who was very isolated, to a staff member who works with and interacts with all youth in our Club. She coordinates our kindergarten program, and volunteers countless hours at the Club,” said Nikki Barone, Unit Director of the Boys & Girls Club of Oak Harbor.

Erika expressed that as a youngster she was anti-social and angry at everything and everyone. Getting involved at the Club and having Club staff on her side helped her make friends and overcome her negative attitude. She struggled academically, and entered middle school with a third grade reading level. However, she was able to defeat her academic struggles because of Club staff help and tutoring during the Club’s Power Hour program. Erika indicated that the Club has shown her the importance of staying focused on her education so she could have a better future.

“Erika is a great example to our Club kids as someone who has utilized all of the Club’s resources to point her in the direction she wants to go in life,” shared Nikki. “She is a very motivated young woman, self-driven to succeed in school and life. She believes her education has been very important to her success. Erika attended Oak Harbor High School, graduating ahead of schedule with Honors and a 3.65 GPA. She currently attends Skagit Valley Community College, pursuing a Medical Assistant degree.”

Erika will go on to compete at the Washington State level against Youths of the Year from Boys & Girls Clubs across the state. Winners each receive a $1,000 scholarship and participate in regional competitions. Five regional winners each receive a $10,000 scholarship and compete on the national level. The National Youth of the Year receives up to an additional $50,000 scholarship and the opportunity to meet and be recognized by the President of the United States.

BGCSC-2014-YOY-Candidates

A complete list of the BGCSC 2014 Youth of the Year Candidates are as follows:

Abdalah Badjan (Alderwood Club); Joe Zak (Arlington Club); Samuel Agyei (Cascade Club); Raechel Kundert (Coupeville Club); Jacquelyn Lovelace (Edmonds Club); Rhiann Flores (Everett Club); McKayla Olson (Granite Falls Club); Katelyn Hall (Lake Stevens Club); Madison Brewer (Marysville Club); Kayla Steltz (Monroe Club); Trevor Gray (Mukilteo Club); Ben Pirtle (North Kitsap Club); Erika R. Aguilar (Oak Harbor Club); Meghan Boob (Snohomish Club); Alexis Alamillo (S. Everett/Mukilteo Club); Joseph Schmidt (Sultan Club); Ocean Holscher (Trailside Club); Angelica Trinidad (Tulalip Club)

Judges for the event were Terry Ackley, Tania Halladay, Dominic Ivankovich, Noni LaLone, Bill Rucker, and Preston Simmons.

Everett Club Hosts Baseball Camp and Pro Day

BGCSC Everett Baseball Camp Group Photo 011915 Photo Credit Ed GayThe Everett Boys & Girls Club hosted a Baseball Camp and Pro Day on Monday, January 19 at the Club’s Gaffney Field. 180 kids from Snohomish County participated, drawing from many of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Snohomish County’s (BGCSC) 19 Clubs, as well as youth from the Seattle Tides and Stilly Valley Little League. During the camp, participants had the opportunity to run through a series of nine stations that included hitting, pitching, speed/agility and defense. Each station was led by professional baseball players and volunteers; the adults mentored the youth on Healthy Life Choices, including the importance of getting good grades, believing in oneself, being confident and good sportsmanship. At the conclusion of the event, participants left with giveaways including MLBPA trading cards, signed bats and balls from the local pro players.

Local Boys & Girls Club alum and pro ball player Travis Snider coordinated the event and recruited fellow players to volunteer. This is the first major BGCSC event to take place at Gaffney Field since the groundbreaking for the updated field took place on October 2, 2014. The field now includes astroturf, a new scoreboard, fencing, dugouts, and seating. The renovations were made through partnership with Everett Community College, the Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation and Snohomish County Parks and Recreation. The Everett Community College women’s softball team uses the Club field.

“What an amazing gift these guys are giving to these kids,” commented Mike McGinnis, Everett Club Director. “Many of these pro ball players helping today were Club members themselves and it is inspiring to see them giving back in this way.”

Professional baseball players and other key people who volunteered at the camp include:

Travis Snider (Pittsburgh Pirates MLB–OF, Jackson High School); Brent Lilibridge (7 Year MLB veteran–INF/OF, Jackson High School [Free Agent]); Steven Souza (Tampa Bay Rays MLB–OF, Cascade High School); James Robbins (Detroit Tigers MILB–1B, Shorecrest High School); Geoff Brown (LA Dodgers MILB–LHP, Jackson High School); Pierce Rankin (Toronto Blue Jays MILB–C, Shorecrest High School); Kawika Emsley-Pai (Pittsburgh Pirates MILB–C, Jackson High School); Mitch Canham (8 Year MILB Veteran–C, Lake Stevens High School [Free Agent]); Josh Kimborowicz (Tampa Bay Rays MILB–RHP, Jackson/Mt. Si High School); Blake Snell (Tampa Bay Rays MILB–RHP, Shorewood High School); Connor Oliver (Atlanta Braves MILB–OF, Lives locally and trains at Northcore); Kirk Nieuwenhuis (New York Mets MLB–OF, Lives locally and trains at Northcore); Dylan Davis (San Francisco Giants–OF/DH, Redmond High School); Matt Boyd (Cincinnati Reds–P, Mercer Island); Jeff Millet (Northcore Performance Training, Strength and Conditioning Coach for Professional and High School Athletes, Personal Trainer); Kirk Nicholson (Jackson High School Head Baseball Coach); Denne Snider (Father of Travis Snider and former Everett Boys & Girls Club Coach and Mill Creek Little League President); Curt Nelson (EVCC Assistant Baseball Coach).