2015 Year in Review From the Executive Director

Dear Boys and Girls Clubs of San Dieguito Community, Members and Supporters,

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         As I look back on 2015, I am humbled by my experience as the Executive Director of the Boys and Girls Clubs of San Dieguito, and with pride, look forward to ring in our 50th year of serving the community.  In 1966 our founders envisioned and built this organization for youth to develop their health, self-esteem, and character.  Today, 50 years later, we remain faithful to that core mission.  As Director, I am driven to stay true to our core mission, committed to serving even more youth with the same successful path to the future I experienced from the time I first walked into the Harper Clubhouse 24 years ago.  I would not be the person I am today without the vision of our passionate founders.

         I am honored to represent the 5,700 youth we serve throughout our thirteen program areas and in our seven after school locations.  We are your community resource for rewarding after school activities and specialty programs.  We consistently provide the very best staff and programs, and are grateful for the generous support of so many individuals and corporations who believe in our mission.

During this time of reflection I want to share some highlights from 2015…

IMG_9744         We offered $351,136 in financial aid to our youth, never turning a child away. We brought science to life through STEM programs in our after school clubhouses and always provided a safe place for kids when school was out, including fun break-week camps and over 150 different summer camps. Our Centers for Healthy Lifestyles brought the farm to table experience through five-week garden and cooking classes for more than 360 youth. We educated hundreds of Club kids through specialized programs; College Nights, Money Matters, Power Hour, SMART girls, and Keystone Club. We inspired young artists through our unique Youth Arts Academy and Ceramic Arts programs and received the coveted Gateway to Impact Award in the GOLD category from the Boys and Girls Clubs of America, honoring Clubs with outstanding attendance making strides in average daily attendance and capacity utilization.

         We served over 1,000 local youth in our athletics program (covering 5 middle schools and 10 sports not otherwise offered due to eliminated school programs), and taught over 1,000 summertime swim lessons while enrolling thousands of youth in our after school experiences. Our La Colonia Clubhouse in Eden Gardens provided services for over 100 youth and teens with 100% community supported funding. The Youth Arts Academy hosted over 5,000 music lessons through our 30+ classes ranging from rock band, dance, photography and private music lessons for brass, winds, strings, percussion, and voice. We serve some of the youngest Club-kids-to-be in the country through our Carmel Valley Montessori, currently enrolling preschool aged children starting at 18 months. And the list goes on…

         On behalf of all staff, Board Members, and Club kids, I am proud of these accomplishments and hopeful in 2016 we can do even more.  From my first job as a young Club swim instructor in 1993, to raising my two daughters as proud Club kids, I know firsthand the positive effects we have on youth development, education, compassion, safety, and happiness. We are grateful and honored that our members call us their “home away from home.” I can’t think of anything more valuable. We appreciate everyone who makes our service possible as we welcome in our golden 50th year. I hope to see you in the Clubs soon.

Sincerely,

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Marineke Vandervort
Executive Director
Boys & Girls Clubs of San Dieguito