Open Door to Opportunity 8

Opportunity Knocks with the Boys & Girls Club’s Blue Door Campaign

It’s all about sustainability—a sustainable future for the youth and families of West Chester and Liberty Township. The Boys & Girls Club of West Chester/Liberty is working toward that overall goal in their newly launched Blue Door Campaign.

The Club, which opened in West Chester/Liberty in 2014, serves more than 400 community kids each year with a wide range of programs, including life-skill training and character development. It provides a fun, safe place led by trained, caring adults to help kids prepare for adulthood. Club programs run after-school and in the summertime, around the school schedule, providing affordable supervision and training for students in 2nd-8th grades.”

“Our biggest focus at Boys & Girls Club is that kids graduate on time with a plan for the future, regardless of what that future is,” says Michelle Seither, CEO, Boys & Girls Club West Chester/Liberty. “We know that some kids have a future destined for college. We also know that some kids, that may not be in the cards for them.”

“Our programing is outcome focused. We work with Lakota Schools and the teachers and the school liaisons to ensure that students are doing well academically,” Seither says. “We dedicate 45 minutes every day to homework—that’s a requirement. If they don’t have homework, they’re required to participate in educational activities like math races, boggle, etcetera.”

With the number of youth coming in steadily increasing, the Boys & Girls Club has outgrown its current facility on Smith Road in West Chester. The Club is now preparing to break ground for its new facility on Cincinnati-Dayton Road, at the site of the old Union Township Unified School. The Blue Door Campaign, the Boys & Girls Club’s community fundraiser, will help open the doors there.

“The money [from the Blue Door Campaign] goes straight toward operations,” says Seither.

“The funds will sustain our ability to be here and bring in new programs and new technology, because that’s changing all the time,” says Beth Simminger, Director of Donor Relations at Boys & Girls Club of West Chester/Liberty.

Why the blue door? It’s a symbol for opportunity.

“We always say that opportunity is just on the other side of the door, so that’s where the blue door came from,” Seither explains.

The ongoing campaign is a knock of opportunity for the youth of our community. Hope comes from seeing the potential of the club to meet the needs of more and more young people in West Chester and Liberty Township.

“It’s our ongoing way of expressing the need for sustainability. So it’s not your every day, from here-to-there campaign where we try to raise ‘x’ amount of dollars,” says Simminger. “We’d rather raise friends of the Club that take a personal interest because this will also build our volunteer systems and generate community feedback.”

With the new location coming and the campaign continuing, the Boys & Girls Club wants local residents to know that the 30,000 square-foot facility is going to have enough space for more than the needs of youth—it will be available for community needs, as well: meetings, sports leagues, parties and events will be welcomed in a spirit of togetherness for all ages. The goal is to have the building ready for occupancy by the start of the 2017-18 school year.

“You know the old saying, ‘It takes a village?’ Well, it takes a village,” Seither adds. “It takes the entire community to raise a generation up. It’s about pulling everybody together to be headed in the same direction.”

Want to help? Support the youth of the community by joining the Blue Door Campaign. Use your time, talents and resources to open the door to great futures as partners with Boys & Girls Club of West Chester/Liberty.