This post was sponsored by Boys and Girls Club as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central and all opinions expressed in my post are my own.
I’ve heard a lot about Boys and Girls Club of America and I’ve even promoted it in the past. All I knew was what I’d read about it. Last week I had the opportunity to actually experience BGCA, during a kickoff event for their new My.Future social platform. I was blown away by what I saw and learned, and by this well-oiled machine they have going at the Los Angeles Watts/Willowbrook Clubhouse. With their new program, Boys and Girls Club of America is creating strong and smart kids.
In the past, BGCA was known for being a gym and swim – somewhere for kids to go after school, to play in a safe environment. The club has grown to be so much more than just a safe space to play. I got to witness the coming together of big corporation, Comcast NBC Universal, and the non-profit Boys and Girls Club of America to bring the kids an educational piece to their time at the club.
California Assemblyman Mike Gipson visited the Watts/Willowbrook Clubhouse to introduce My.Future, a new digital platform for learning. It was an exciting afternoon with about 100 enthusiastic teens and pre-teens. Each of the kids first got on an iPad and registered for an account with My.Future, where they will be able to develop lifelong skills. With supervision and aid from BGCA, kids are guided through different programs, of their choosing, to learn skills in Digital Literacy, Computer Science, Media Making, Leadership, Lyricism and Visual Arts.
In addition to learning skills such as coding and creating apps or learning to make a music video, kids can earn badges by completing activities to learn about cyberbullying. The youth really are encouraged and taught to thrive and flourish in this digital age, all while practicing safe internet usage. BGCA is building strong, confident youth who can also share their creations on the My.Future platform, where BGCA kids across the nation can see their work. It’s a great, safe place for the kids to grow and use their new knowledge and skills.
After completing activities online, certificates and badges are earned, and the kids are encouraged to try new activities. The learning doesn’t stop after the school day, when kids go to their local Boys and Girls Club of America. They are taught to be leaders, and to let their personality shine. Witnessing it firsthand was incredible because I could see the difference BGCA is making in these kids’ lives.
The kids were having a blast during the event, and even came out onto the gym floor to bust a move. At the end of the event, Comcast NBC Universal gift each and every kid their own iPad and pair of headphones so they can get to creating! Needless to say, the kids were beyond excited!
Visit your local BGCA and see for yourself how they are changing the lives of our youth today.