Every year, the Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Illinois holds a youth holiday party. A time when all Club members come together to share in the holiday spirit with games, crafts, food and the long-awaited presents from Santa.
As usual, the party went off without a hitch and by the time it was over, everyone involved was smiling from ear to ear.
This year was extra special to me. Thanks to the numerous volunteers present, I was able to step away from the detailed schedule of activities I was used to managing and simply enjoy the children’s joy. I witnessed a few precious moments that forced me to slow down and realize the importance of the Club in these kids’ lives.
- Naomi, age 7 and big lover of animals, received her very own robotic pet dog.
- Brandon, a first grader, proudly told the entire staff of his winning Bingo two times in a row.
- James, 10 years old, enjoyed a plate of spaghetti and bread sticks from Olive Garden, a restaurant he had never visited.
- De’Shiya, a 2nd grader who is known for grumpily walking around the Club, came to life with energy and laughter as she played a balloon game in the gym.
- Brooklyn, a 6 year old, was gifted a queen-size fleece blanket. She was thrilled to replace her current sleeping bag with a big, cozy blanket.
This is why the Club is here — to ensure all kids feel valued, supported and taken care of. Tonight, all of our members felt that.
-Anna Schneider, Director of Resource Development
All of this would not have been possible without the help of numerous volunteers and donors! We are incredibly grateful to all who helped make this night special for so many kids. With your help, we are making a real, positive difference in the lives of kids who need us most.
Lindsay & Christin (our party planners extraordinaire), Olive Garden for their continued donation of catering & manpower, the Melissa Vorreyer ReMax team for their awesome decorating job, and all the folks who volunteered to run such awesome game & craft stations including: Order of the Eastern Star Estella Chapter #3, Springfield Police Dept, SERTOMA, Shawn, Chad, Adam and Tom from BUNN, the Wilkin family, Union Baptist Church, SHG students, & Rotary Midtown.
And of course, thank you to all those who participated in our Adopt-a-Member program to ensure that every child at the Club received a gift this holiday season!!
For more holiday party pics click HERE!