The Boys & Girls Club of Santa Clarita Valley has opened its doors at Castaic Middle School. The site launched Feb. 7, expanding the Club to its fourth location, providing more programs and serving more youth.
“Expanding services to the Castaic community has been a goal of ours for years,” said Gloria Mercado-Fortine, a board member of the Boys & Girls Club of Santa Clarita Valley, who worked on the committee to spearhead the effort and was president when plans were formalized. “Having a Boys & Girls Club serving unincorporated areas of Castaic and Val Verde is essential in helping to put the young people of the Santa Clarita Valley on a path to a successful future. Thanks to Supervisor Barger’s support the dream of this program is being realized. We are excited to provide a Club experience that supports academic success, builds futures, and provides a safe place with caring adults.”
Current board president, Matt Carpenter said the goal is to expand the Club’s services to Castaic where youth can learn and hang out while making new friends. Club members will be able to participate in out of school programs and activities, such as “Power Hour” homework and tutoring sessions, youth leadership-such as Leaders in Training, develop lasting friendships, and receive social emotional support from caring adult mentors.
With the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic still being realized, out of school programs like the Boys & Girls Club are providing critical support and resources to vulnerable youth. It’s important that our community enables children and teens to reach their full potential, keeping them on track to graduate on time, as productive and caring citizens. The Club provides a fun safe place for kids while parents and guardians work.
“Castaic Union School District is very excited to partner with the Boys and Girls Club to offer a high-quality afterschool program for our middle school students,” said Steve Doyle, superintendent Castaic Union School District. “This is an opportunity that has been needed for a long time. We very much appreciate the financial support from Supervisor Barger to assist with modernizing our facilities to support the program. We look forward to this collaborative partnership with the Boys and Girls Club and are excited to have the program up and running!”
“I’m proud to have funded the expansion of this important afterschool program,” said Los Angeles County Supervisor Kathryn Barger, whose 5th District includes the Santa Clarita Valley. “The activities provided by the Boys & Girls Club are engaging, high-quality and fun. Just a few months ago, the U.S. Surgeon General issued a warning that young people are struggling with anxiety, depression and other mental health challenges. Increasing opportunities to connect our youth with local extracurricular programs and caring adults is exactly what is needed right now.”
The community will celebrate with a ribbon-cutting ceremony in the Spring with tours of the new clubhouse located at Castaic Middle School. The Club is open to Castaic Middle School youth. Annual membership is $60 per year. The other three Club locations are James T. Ventress Clubhouse in Newhall, Sierra Vista Clubhouse in Canyon Country, and at Wiley Canyon Elementary School. At all sites, members have access to homework help, leadership programs, sports programs, the arts, mentoring and more. School break programs are $10 per day. Scholarships are available.
About Boys & Girls Club of Santa Clarita Valley
Formed in 1968 by a group of community leaders who recognized the growing need for high-quality, affordable programs and facilities for the area’s young people, Boys & Girls Club of Santa Clarita Valley supports academic success, builds future leaders, and provides a second home for more than 5,000 youth a year. The Club is a chartered member of Boys & Girls Clubs of America, an organization with 4,300 clubs nationwide serving nearly 4 million kids and teens. Boys & Girls Club of Santa Clarita Valley is governed by a volunteer board of directors comprised of outstanding leaders in the community and staffed by a team of dedicated Youth Development Professionals. To learn more about Santa Clarita Valley Boys & Girls Club and its programs and partners, go to www.scvbgc.org.