Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Oxnard and Port Hueneme

A Message from our CEO, Erin Antrim

Posted in Uncategorized by BGCOP Staff on September 23, 2014

Hello BGCOP supporters,
I am thrilled to be writing this message as the new Chief Executive Officer of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Oxnard and Port Hueneme. We have so much to be proud of over our 60 year history and so much work left to do! Youth today are positioned for the first time in history to be worse off than their parents. America’s kids are in crisis. Consider these alarming facts about the state of our country: the U.S. ranks 22nd in high school completion among 28 countries; three out of 10 kids are obese or overweight; and one in five youth lives in poverty. The consequences of these staggering statistics are felt not just by our next generation, but also across our nation.

The issues facing kids today also impact our nation’s economy, costing as much as $209 billion in lost taxes and higher government expenditures over the lifetimes of those who fail to graduate. Nationally, healthcare costs to treat health issues related to childhood obesity are $14.1 billion annually. Additionally, states spend an average of $7.1 million a day locking youth up in juvenile justice facilities.

How do we reverse the most negative trends facing young people today? One way is by recognizing the importance of out-of-school time. The out-of-school environment—after school and summer—plays an essential, yet often overlooked, role in transforming kids’ lives and America’s future.

What happens during the hours between school and home can have a dramatic impact on a child’s future, especially in the areas of education, health and character development. By providing access to positive, productive programs and caring adult mentors after school and during summer, we can help change the future for our youth, our community and our country.

o For example, 96% of our youth graduate from high school. One of our unique programs we offer is our youth empowerment program. In this program 92% of our youth get jobs or enter post-secondary education or both.
o We engage youth in taking action in their community and world, promote resilience, build character strength, and develop the next generation of America’s leaders. Our teens participate in at least two community service activities a month, engaging in service learning is essential to the growth and development of our youth!
o We motivate kids to be healthy through nutrition and health education, more access to healthy foods, avoidance of risky behaviors and a lifelong commitment to fitness. Our kids engage in much more physical activity than a typical young person that would go home after school. We have many programs that teach our kids about healthy living and healthy eating.

This is compared to some startling statistics in our community: In our community 73% of kids graduate high school, there is a 14% teen pregnancy rate in Oxnard and 58% of kids in the 5th grade in this community are overweight or obese.

Here at BGCOP, we are taking a stand as a leader in afterschool programs and working hard to reverse some of the negative trends facing our youth. We have been doing this great work for decades, we need the community’s support to continue to deepen the impact we have in our members lives and to reach even more young people!

With Passion for kids,

Erin Reardon Antrim

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