As Yankton kids settle into the routine of summer, one new building has been a constant for many of those youth. The Boys & Girls Club of Yankton in their new location north of Yankton Middle School sees 240 Yankton kids in 1st -12th grades each day and has a total of 822 members. In the past couple weeks of summer, the Club has been busy with new members, more kids, great programs and many collaborations across the Yankton community. The cost of care of a child for the year at the Club is approximately $1200. The membership dues are only $25 a year. The dues are much lower than the actual expense to ensure that every child in Yankton has access to a safe, positive place after school and in the summer.
One of the many generous investors in the Club and the future of our kids is United Way of Greater Yankton. United Way supports the Club in the areas of education and health to provide daily programming, academic support, meals, snacks and other opportunities for area youth. United Way has helped to build collaborations, increase knowledge and advocacy as well as fund programs at the Boys & Girls Club that are making an impact on the community.
With the help of a unique partnership this year between Truxedo and United Way, the Club was awarded the Community Enhancement Grant to expand Power Up, a program designed to prevent summer learning loss in youth who need it most. Through this grant and the investment of the Club and Yankton School District, 50 youth will have the opportunity to participate in a five week project based reading and math program. Each child is teacher referred and the goal of the program is that every student maintains or increases reading and math comprehension. In the 2016 pilot program, 15 youth went through the program and all maintained or increased reading and math skills.
Along with the specific program of Power Up, United Way and investors throughout the community are helping to create the impact in area youth as shown below:
· 25 youth that were first time offenders have had a second chance through the juvenile diversion program, Teen Court in the past year. Teen Court focuses on restorative justice with a trial put on by teens and a sentence of community action points that aim to help youth make better choices in the future. The recidivism rate in this program is under 10% with the statewide average for juvenile recidivism is 45%.
· 71 youth have logged 196 volunteer hours so far in 2017
· 593 youth have gotten homework help and support through academic based programs this year.
· 1,964 meals have been served along with 23,699 snacks this year to ensure children are fed.
The investment in the youth of our community will have lasting effects on those people, their families, employers and ultimately our community. Thank you for choosing to help youth build great futures. To learn more about any of these programs, sign up youth, volunteer, or take a tour, contact the Club at www.greatfuturessd.org