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Native Services Unit Shines at BGCA National Conference

Native Boys & Girls Clubs were well represented in the ‘Big Easy’ this May at the Boys & Girls Clubs of America National Conference. Located in New Orleans, this year’s National Conference was full of special guests, inspiring sessions, and dazzling exhibitors including the Native Services Unit team. For two days, conference guests were able to roam the exhibit hall and learn more about the great things happening in Native Clubs across the country. Guests were greeted by a “Welcome” sign that incorporated a salutation from each team member’s language and were encouraged to grab resources and ask questions about Clubs in Native communities. Members of the Native Services Unit team also brought pieces that represented their culture to be displayed at the booth.

Additionally, guests were invited to participate in a session created just for Native Club staff and supporters. Since 2016 is the “Year of the Teen”, special guests and panelists shared their work to reach teens in their community and their goals for future out reach. Afterwards members of the Native Advisory Committee (NAC) joined together to discuss progress made thus far and create goals for future success of all Clubs, both present and future. With another National Conference in the record books and summer arriving, it is the opportune time to reflect on past successes and plan for more great futures starting in your Club!

Photo: Carla Knapp, National Director of Native Services, BGCA, connects with professionals from Native Boys & Girls Clubs.

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Summer of Service

What better way to get your Club youth out into the community (and the outdoors) than through summer service projects? Youth Services America (YSA) has created a special edition of their Youth Service Briefing focused on ideas for engaging youth in summer service projects. Their suggestions for a successful service experience are based on these simple steps:

  1. Start with things your kids love to do. Show them that their passion and strength can be channeled into service that is both fun for them and beneficial for others.

  2. Consider issues your kids care about. What problems matter most to them? Identifying those issues and building service projects around them will help the service feel especially meaningful.

  3. Combine passions and issues for impact. Consider projects that provide an opportunity for your youths’ strengths to shine through while they work to address an issue that they care about.

  4. Encourage, support and help your kids learn. Think about how your youth could serve as leaders in the project and learn something new from the experience.

To get your youth engaged in summer service projects, check out more of YSA’s ideas and additional recommendations from the National PTA’s Our Children blog. By directing their passion, skills, and leadership towards service this summer, your Club youth can make a huge difference!

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About Us

For more information, read about the BGCA Native Services Unit team members and how to contact
them individually.

BGCA Mentoring

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Contact Us

BGCA Native Services Unit
Dallas Service Center
2107 N. Collins Boulevard
Richardson, TX 75080

Direct: 972-581-2374
E-mail: BGCANS@BGCA.ORG