Two Ohkay Owingeh Boys and Girls Club members Selected to Attend White House Tribal Youth Gathering

This July, the White House will host a Tribal Youth Gathering with the intention of fostering dialogue between Native youth and senior Administration officials. Two young women from Ohkay Owingeh Boys and Girls Club have been selected to attend the event, where they will share with top officials and members of the White House Council on Native American Affairs their ideas about improving the lives of Native youth.

Taylor Moya, age 16, and Jordan Cailey Moya, age 15, are both active members of their community and are passionate about outreach. “Giving back to my community is important to me because it manifests a feeling of happiness,” writes Taylor. “I am proud to take part in my culture because there are many Native Americans that are losing their culture."

After attending a robotics event, Jordan was disappointed at the lack of participation from her fellow Club members. She decided to change this and, with the help of Club Director Jay Abeyta Jr., she designed robotics curriculum for the Club and now helps teach robotics classes for her peers. Both Taylor and Jordan are also involved with many other development efforts, including volunteering for child welfare organizations within their community. Good luck, Taylor and Jordan; you will both make excellent representatives!


Celebrating New Beginnings

For one community in Washington State, new beginnings are being celebrated as the door open to a new Boys & Girls Club located in Inchelium, WA. The Boys & Girls Clubs of Snohomish County recently held a dedication ceremony for a new Unit, known as the Inchelium Boys & Girls Club, built on the Colville Reservation through a partnership with the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation. Through opening an additional Unit, the Club is able to impact more lives by providing a safe and positive place to promote academic achievement, leadership skills, and healthy lifestyles while youth are out of school.

“We hope our Club will create an environment where youth can have fun, be creative, inventive, successful, and feel safe,” explained Unit director Pamela Phillips during an interview, “I am thrilled and honored to be part of this Club that will hopefully provide our children with ventures to become successful citizens."

Club kids will have the opportunity to hone important life skills while also exploring potential new interests and hobbies. The new community center that the Club calls home includes a gymnasium, game room, computer lab, and multi-purpose room. Having these resources allows for a variety of programming to be implemented after-school!

Bill Tsoukalas, Boys & Girls Clubs of Snohomish County Executive Director, commented, “We’re excited about bringing the [Club] to the Inchelium community in partnership with the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation. This will be the second Native American Boys & Girls Club in Washington State and will be joining a family of over 175 tribal Boys & Girls Clubs in the country."

Are you interested in starting a Native Club or expanding your current organization by opening additional Units? This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Youth Climbing the Walls at the Boys & Girls Club of Rosebud

Playtime Elevated

At the Boys & Girls Club of Rosebud youth are having extreme adventures right within the walls of the Club. In the fall of 2014, a 16 foot climbing wall and a 550 square foot bouldering cave were built for Club members by local volunteers. Now the youth at the Club have a new favorite activity.

“The wall builds our students’ motivation for a healthy lifestyle and allows them to experience success in overcoming their fears [while] in a safe and loving environment!” said climbing instructor/teacher Breanna Stroh.

The Club’s Executive Director, Glen Marshall, loves both the wall and the story of how it came to be. “The goal was to provide active recreation, indoors, that would challenge our kids both physically and mentally.” said Marshall, “Climbing is one of my favorite things to do outdoors, so when the organization known as ‘A World Feast’ told us they would sponsor a wall, we rallied the troops and were able to make it happen. Our volunteers were amazing and the kids love to climb - as they frequently remind our staff. They get up on the walls almost every day.”


Expanding the Club’s Reach through a Boarding School Partnership

My name is Jameson Goetz, and I currently serve as an AmeriCorps*VISTA Volunteer with the Boys & Girls Club of Moody County in Flandreau, SD. Through my role as an AmeriCorps*VISTA Volunteer, I have the opportunity to do some incredibly fun and rewarding work. Most recently, I have been very excited about the progress we have been making with our relationship with the Flandreau Indian Boarding School (FIS). The Boys & Girls Club of Moody County just recently formed a partnership with FIS through which all of the more than 300 FIS students officially joined the Club. Since the fall we have been doing programming and activities with the FIS students a couple hours twice a week. We are looking to further develop our programming with FIS, with the eventual goal of offering meaningful, impactful programs five or six days a week. Also, we are currently planning on taking a group of FIS students on a campus visit to South Dakota State University (we've already made plans for a similar visit with Flandreau Public School students). I have also scheduled admissions representatives from four different community colleges and technical students to come to FIS during the evenings and discuss potential post-secondary education opportunities. I definitely feel that we are creating meaningful relationships with the staff and students at FIS. I know that if we continue working hard that we will eventually see something really special happen through our Club's partnership with the school.


South Dakota’s 2015 Youth of the Year

Kaleb Hartley, representing the Boys and Girls Clubs of the Missouri River Area in Wagner, SD, was named South Dakota’s 2015 Youth of the Year. Kaleb was one of seven finalists who were selected based on their academic record, community involvement, and involvement in their Club.

Along with his parents and other finalists from Clubs in South Dakota, Kaleb spent two days in Pierre, SD being interviewed by judges and meeting dignitaries. He received a $5,000 scholarship, and will now go on to compete in the Midwest Regional competition this July in Chicago, IL. The Regional Youth of the Year selected this summer in Chicago will then compete in Washington D.C. this fall to be named the National Youth of the Year, which is the highest honor presented by Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA).

Kaleb, who has been a member at Missouri River Area since 2003, attends and volunteers at the Club every day. He has a 4.0 grade point average and is the only senior Native member on the National Honor Society at his school. He attributes much of his academic success to Power Hour, which he has participated in since he first became a Club member at six years old. Involvement in the Youth of the Year contest has made Kaleb even more passionate about volunteering at his Club, so that more youth can enjoy a positive experience like he’s had over the years. After high school he plans to attend Creighton University in Omaha, NE to pursue a major in Nursing and a minor in Native American studies.

Every year one teen is named BGCA’s National Youth of the Year, awarded a $50,000 scholarship, a brand new car, and serves as BGCA’s official teen spokesperson.

Photo: Kaleb Hartley and Linda Daugaard, First Lady of South Dakota
Photo Credit: Boys & Girls Club of the Missouri River Area

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