Competence, usefulness, belonging, and influence. That’s what the Boys & Girls Club of Shawano instills in children who don’t have access to a stable, positive after-school environment. In the era of virtual learning, the need might look different, but the mission is still as critical as ever.
“For the children who come to Club multiple years in a row, we get to see their growth, and the difference it makes to have a consistent role model in their lives. One little girl was very quiet initially and isolated herself away from the other kids. We’ve watched her build friendships and become more engaged with what is happening around her,” says Kim Lodewegen, executive director.
In this video, Lodewegen shares more about that girl’s story and about how the Shawano Area Community Foundation supports the mission of the Boys & Girls Club:
Typically, the Club offers a summer school program, but COVID-19 forced staff to shift gears. Instead, they created relief bags for families that included meals, snacks and activities. COVID-19 also interrupted a season of fundraising, which was supplemented by a grant from the Shawano Area Community Foundation (our regional affiliate partner), allowing the Club to continue serving kids and families in our community.
The Shawano Area Community Foundation was established in 1990 by community volunteers to preserve and improve the quality of life in Shawano and the surrounding area. It is an affiliate of the Community Foundation for the Fox Valley Region. Read our story here.