The Boys & Girls Clubs of the Midlands (BGCM) is pleased to announce it was recently awarded a $715,200 grant from United Way of the Midlands. BGCM programming will focus on two primary areas: meeting the basic needs of children in poverty and ensuring that children are ready to learn and achieving academic success.
Thanks to the generosity of United Way, BGCM is able to support more than 6,000 underserved youth each year, seeing an average of more than 1,800 youth a day. With eleven service sites located in the Omaha metro area, BGCM is part of the collective effort to transform the community by providing youth with impactful, fun and educational opportunities in a safe and caring environment. With the help of United Way, BGCM is able to offer more high-quality programs that create happy and healthy children and teens today while building a foundation of success for tomorrow.
A few of the highlighted programs at the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Midlands include:
“BGCM’s partnership with United Way of the Midlands is vitally impactful because our collaboration allows us to serve the Omaha metro’s most underserved youth by providing a nutritious meal and a safe place to go while preparing them for future success with Academic, Good Character & Leadership, and Healthy Lifestyles programs,” Ivan Gilreath, President/CEO of Boys & Girls Clubs of the Midlands said.
For more information about this award or to arrange interviews please contact Ashley Winans, Chief Development Officer, at 402-342-1600 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Boys & Girls Clubs of the Midlands (BGCM) received an Honor Award for Program Excellence in Education and Career Development at Boys & Girls Clubs of America’s 111th National Conference held recently in Dallas. The organization received a $5,000 award from MetLife Foundation, sponsor of the annual recognition program, which honors local Clubs for innovative, effective programming leading youth to great futures.
The Honor Award for Program Excellence is Boys & Girls Clubs of America’s (BGCA) most coveted and prestigious award. It is presented to a club that enables young people to become proficient in basic educational disciplines, set goals, explore careers, prepare for employment, and embrace technology to achieve success in a career. The Westside Boys & Girls Club was highlighted due to having the most participants.
Ivan Gilreath, President and CEO of BGCM had a vision when he joined Boys & Girls Clubs of the Midlands back in 2012. He wanted to provide an afterschool reading program to give youth the opportunity to be at or above grade level in reading by the end of third grade. Research confirms that being able to read proficiently by the end of third grade is one of the best indicators of on-time high school graduation.
From this vision, Readers to Leaders was created. Julie Frizzell, Reading Program Director, joined BGCM in the spring of 2012. From that time, over 3,000 members have participated in Readers to Leaders. Ms. Frizzell explains, “We are able to offer an instructional, research-based program that adapts to each child’s level for our younger members (6-8) and a research-based supplemental program for our 9-12 year olds. Our goals are very clear. We want youth to develop a love of reading, improve fluency and comprehension, and be held accountable for reaching their goals. We want members to graduate on time with a plan for their future.”
BGCM’s members know that participation in Readers to Leaders and reaching their reading goal equals exciting fieldtrips to places like Fun-Plex, Amazing Pizza Machine or a night in the Safari Grasslands at the zoo.
So many people are involved in making sure Readers to Leaders touches the lives of members. BGCM would not have the outcomes and impact they see without dedicated Youth Development Professionals, volunteers, and support from the community.
“In communities nationwide, Boys & Girls Clubs play a vital role in providing young people with safe places to learn and grow,” said Dennis White, President and CEO of MetLife Foundation. “We are pleased to recognize Boys & Girls Clubs of the Midlands for providing exemplary programs and making a positive difference in the lives of local young people.”
Club members who reach their reading goals are awarded with exciting fieldtrips to places such as The Amazing Pizza Machine, Family Fun Center XL, and Fun-Plex.
Boys & Girls Clubs of the Midlands’ (BGCM) strong financial health and commitment to accountability and transparency has earned it a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator, America’s largest independent charity evaluator. This is the third consecutive year that BGCM has earned this top distinction.
Since 2002, using objective analysis, Charity Navigator has awarded only the most fiscally responsible organizations a 4-star rating. In 2011, Charity Navigator added 17 metrics, focused on governance and ethical practices as well as measures of openness, to its ratings methodology. These Accountability & Transparency metrics, which account for 50 percent of a charity’s overall rating, reveal which charities operate in accordance with industry best practices and whether they are open with their donors and stakeholders. On June 1, 2016, we upgraded our methodology for rating each charity’s’ financial health with CN 2.1. These enhancements further substantiates the financial health of our four star charities.
“Boys & Girls Clubs of the Midlands’ exceptional 4-star rating sets it apart from its peers and demonstrates its trustworthiness to the public,” according to Michael Thatcher, President & CEO of Charity Navigator. “Only a quarter of charities rated by Charity Navigator receive the distinction of our 4-star rating. This adds Boys & Girls Clubs of the Midlands to a preeminent group of charities working to overcome our world’s most pressing challenges. Based on its 4-star rating, people can trust that their donations are going to a financially responsible and ethical charity when they decide to support Boys & Girls Clubs of the Midlands.”
“It’s important our donors trust that we’re using their donations wisely to accomplish our mission to inspire and enable all young people, especially those who need us most, to realize their full potential as productive, responsible, healthy and caring members of society,” said Ivan Gilreath, BGCM President & CEO. “Our 4-star Charity Navigator rating demonstrates to our supporters our good governance and financial accountability.”
BGCM’s rating and other information about charitable giving are available free of charge on www.charitynavigator.org. More-detailed information about BGCM’s rating is available to Charity Navigator site visitors who become registered users, another free service.
Boys & Girls Clubs of the Midlands (BGCM) and Millard Public Schools (MPS) announce the groundbreaking ceremony of the Millard Central Club at Millard Central Middle School (12801 L Street) on Wednesday, May 24 at 10:30 a.m. in conjunction with Omaha Gives!
Students, staff, parents, community members and invited guests will celebrate the new partnership and investment in our community’s future – our youth.
This project represents a unique School-Club partnership, adding a Club to existing schools, connecting underserved youth with hope and opportunities. Boys & Girls Clubs will help provide the resources our youth need to succeed.
“We are honored to be partnering with Millard Public Schools to provide our programming to deserving young people of the Millard Community,” Ivan Gilreath, BGCM President & CEO said. “This model removes the barrier of transportation that so many of our young people face when deciding on after-school programming.”
The Club, scheduled to open in fall of 2018 will have 14,590 square-feet of dedicated space for Club members that includes a significant teen space. The Club will consist of a shared secure entry for both the Club and the school, space for younger members, teen center, learning center with computers, and an innovation center/multi-purpose area that can be used for flying drones or a basketball game. Transportation from Millard South High School will be provided by the school district. The Club will serve 325 youth per day, with the expectation that there will be a large number of teens.
“We are grateful for the investment the Boys & Girls Club is making in our community,” Dr. Jim Sutfin, Superintendent of Millard Public Schools said. “Their dedication to young people will create a ripple through the lives of our students. We are proud to partner with the Boys & Girls Club. They are the gold standard!”
Mt. View Boys & Girls Club is proven success of the School-Club model that will be replicated at Central Middle School. Students will walk down the hall to the Club where they will receive a nutritious meal, academic support, mentoring and a fun place to continue to grow.
“Hot meals at night, homework help and overall fun will be available for these wonderful young people every night and will put them on the right track for eligibility for our scholarship and internships programs when they are older. This is a win for the youth, community, Millard Public Schools and the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Midlands,” Gilreath said.
All monies raised through Omaha Gives! will go to fund the construction and operation of three new Clubs in Omaha, including the Millard Central Club. BGCM will celebrate this day of giving and witness the strength of a community coming together to build a Boys & Girls Club for youth who are in need of quality after-school programming.
The groundbreaking ceremony will include remarks from Dr. Jim Sutfin, Superintendent MPS; Mike Kennedy, MPS Board President; Ivan Gilreath, BGCM President & CEO; and Tim Holland, BGCM Board Chair.
“The Club gave me a peaceful place to be; it became a second home and a second family,” Jaime Valadez, Boys & Girls Clubs of the Midlands’ 2017 Youth of the Year said in a speech.
On Thursday, February 16, six Boys & Girls Clubs of the Midlands’ (BGCM) members competed to represent the organization at the state level Youth of the Year competition.
Representatives from each of the Clubs included:
• Alice Christensen, Carter Lake Unit
• Destiny Howard, Westside Unit
• Janaeco Richard, North Omaha Unit
• Alexis Rocha, Council Bluffs Unit
• Leon Stubblefield, Mt. View Unit
• Jaime Valadez, South Omaha Unit
Jaime Valadez, freshman at Omaha South High School, was named Boys & Girls Clubs of the Midlands’ 2017 Youth of the Year.
Youth of the Year (YOY) recognition is the highest honor a Club member can achieve and is a nationally recognized program through Boys & Girls Clubs of America. The program promotes and celebrates a youth’s service to their Club and community, academic performance and contributions to family and spiritual life. The program distinguishes youth who have overcome enormous odds and demonstrated exceptional character and accomplishments.
“I aspire to become a leader and to set an example for my little brother and my peers,” Valadez said.
Valadez and other Club members competing, spoke about their Club experience, personal brand and their vision for America’s youth. They also went through an interview process with each of the judges.
“The South Omaha Boys & Girls Club is one of the few places I can say that I trust and always feel safe in while I am here,” Valadez said. “I don’t have to worry about being hurt or attacked in any way; it also provides me with a place to express who I am and who I wish to be later on in life.”
Valadez will go on to compete at the State level on March 16 and 17 in Sioux City, Iowa. If selected as Nebraska’s State Youth of the Year he will move on to Regionals in Chicago to compete for one of five spots that go to Washington, D.C., to earn the coveted title of National Youth of the Year.
Historically, the five regional winners have been honored at a Congressional Breakfast on Capitol Hill and have a chance to meet the President of the United States at the White House.
Tupperware Brands Corporation, the programs national sponsor, awards each state winner a $1,000 college scholarship, each regional winner a $10,000 college scholarship and the National Youth of the Year receives an additional college scholarship totaling up to $50,000 from The Rick and Susan Goings Foundation.
Carter Lake Club
Mt. View Club
Druid Hill Club
Morton Middle Club
Spring Lake Club
Skinner Magnet Club
King Science Club
Thirty teams of up to eight brainiacs flexed their collective mental muscles at the Council Bluffs Country Club on Saturday, October 8th for the 5th Annual Boys & Girls Clubs of the Midlands’ “Trivia Buffs of the Bluffs” fundraising competition.
With the help of existing donors and new supporters, Trivia Buffs of the Bluffs, raised, more than $50,000 for the metro area Clubs to continue to provide a safe nurturing environment for our youth.
This year the event honored Ted and Polly Hoff for their long time support to the Boys & Girls Clubs and commitment to the entire community. Ted was a former Southwest Iowa Board of Trustees president and has watched the Council Bluffs Club grow from a small office to the building on the Charles E. Lakin Human Services Campus.
Teams dressed up in their best Casino Royale James Bond themed attire and competed in the “Best Dressed” contest. The evening kicked off with a photo booth, music and a buffet-style dinner with cocktails.
Our celebrity guest host, Shawnte Passmore, KMTV’s morning reporter, took the teams through nine rounds of trivia. The night included a live and silent auction, as well as raise-the paddle.
“Trivia Buffs of the Bluffs is one of our two annual fundraisers and is becoming more popular every year,” Barry Cleaveland, Southwest Iowa Board of Trustees President said. “Everyone has a lot of fun dressing up and studying for our theme – this year Casino Royale – and trying to be the team that takes home the travelling winner’s trophy. It is very heartwarming to know that so many in the metro will come together to support a great cause.”
There’s nothing trivial about the important cause this is all supporting. Each day after school youth ages 5 to 18 visit the H. H. “Red” and Ruth H. Nelson Council Bluffs Club on the Charles E. Lakin Human Services Campus and the Henry Ogram Carter Lake Club to get the homework help they need, share a hot meal with friends and find support and encouragement from the caring staff.
At the Clubs, kids play sports, create works of art, serve the community and learn about careers, college and finances. Club also have a chance to enjoy themselves with field trips and cultural activities – all of this for a membership fee of only $30 per year! Brandon McMiller, BGCM’s Youth of the Year shared his story and Club experience at the event.
Thank you to this year’s “Royal Flush” sponsors, Black Hills Energy, Doll Distributing, First National Bank, Ted & Polly Hoff and Truck Center Companies.
This August, member firms of The Injury Board – a professional association comprised of trial attorneys – from across the U.S. are collectively working to support children in their hometowns by providing in-kind donations of needed items, as well as volunteering their time to the local Boys & Girls Clubs as part of the Injury Board Day of Action.
Inserra & Kelley Attorneys at Law, Omaha’s member firm, will be partnering with the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Midlands (BGCM) to support academic success by donating $1,000 worth of school supplies for kindergarten through 6th graders.
On Thursday, July 28th at noon, the firm will deliver school supplies to the Westside Unit located at 1414 Robertson Drive and volunteer for the day.
“We are very excited and proud to partner with The Injury Board and Inserra & Kelly Attorneys at Law to help our members prepare for the school year by having our partners provide the necessary materials to help them learn and succeed in the classroom,” Tom Kunkel, Chief Operating Officer of the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Midlands said.
BGCM programming focuses on ensuring that kids in poverty are ready to learn and achieve academic success by providing them with the academic support they need. The goal is to deliver programs that create happy and healthy children and teens today while building a foundation of success for tomorrow, impacting a better future.
This is the 3rd Annual Injury Board (IB) Day of Action, a collaborative effort between IB member firms, the Boys & Girls Clubs of America and other youth organizations across the United States.
Look for #IBDayofAction on social media and join the trend to spread positive awareness to children in need.
The Injury Board recruits attorneys based on their proven commitment to these four key areas: relationships, leadership, community and results. Injury Board members make an ongoing promise to donate a portion of their time, talent and resources to local causes and non-profit organizations in order to help make where they live a better place for everyone.
For more information about the 3rd Annual IB Day of Action, please contact Brittany Monbarren at email@example.com. To learn more about the Injury Board membership, please visit www.injuryboard.org/membership.
My life and my family's foundation was established at the Boys Clubs back in the late 60's. My mother believed in what the Club meant in our lives and I will celebrate my 35th year in the Movement this year. I am so honored to have learned from the some of the best men around…Bill Hinckley, Tom Davis, Ike Snell, Dwight Day, Fred Schott, Don Preister, Maurice Lambert, Lonnie McIntosh, Walter Henderson, Wayne Houston and Bob Solonynka.