Community Spotlight

Paulding County Boys & Girls Club Facing Potential Closure in December 2020

Local Community Rallies to Provide Critical Support by October 19

After more than 20 years serving the Paulding County community, the Boys & Girls Club is facing permanent closure. As the only youth serving organization of its kind in the area, this closure would have long-term impact on the whole community, including the hundreds of young people and families it serves each year.

As the country is responding to COVID-19 and working through the ripple effects of the pandemic, Boys & Girls Clubs are facing a tough fundraising landscape. The current Paulding County Boys & Girls Club need major repairs which include installing a new roof and addressing extensive foundation issues. The local Board has been charged with securing $200,000 and a new location by October 19, 2020. If the Board is unable to meet these goals, the Club is slated to close in December 2020.

“Over the years, we’ve served thousands of kids and teens and helped them realize their unlimited potential,” said Raiko Jones, Executive Director. “Through this Club, we provide a vital community resource. Our members have a safe place, dedicated staff, and engaging programs that help them live healthy, succeed in school, and career, and serve as leaders in their communities. Closing this club would be devastating to the members and families who have come to know the Paulding County Boys & Girls Club members and staff as family.”

Paulding Boys & Girls Club serves 180 youth each year and nearly 100 kids and teens each day after school and during school breaks. For most members, the cost is only $60 per school year. Nearly 80 percent of members receive free or reduced lunch (79%) and close to three quarters (74%) are living in single parent households. While these statistics do not define Club members, they are a reminder of the critical need for support.

“The Paulding County Boys & Girls Club is a valuable benefit to the Paulding Community.” said Yolanda Newell, Board Chair. “It supports our youth and helps them with their road map to adulthood. It provides them a safe place to learn, lead and experience the many wonders of the world. It would be detrimental to this community if this club shuts down. I pray that we as a community will unite and keep a very valuable Paulding County asset to this community from closing its doors.”

To date, the Club has secured $65,000 in funding, but has significant progress to make in the next few weeks. If you would like to support to Paulding County Boys & Girls Club and their campaign to stay open, please visit their gofundme page.