Boys & Girls Club distributes food, organizes kids’ activities during COVID-19 lockdown

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Photo Joy Juedes: Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Redlands-Riverside employees Joanna Molina, left, and Vanessa Senteno unload boxes of food donated by Family Service Association of Redlands for the Club’s Family Support program at the Dennis Hansberger Clubhouse in Redlands.
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Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Redlands-Riverside is continuing to meet local families’ needs during the statewide COVID-19 lockdown with its new Family Support Program.

Since March 23, the Club has been distributing a bag of groceries and an age-appropriate activity pack to families whose kids attend the Club. The Club revamped its services to support its families when local school districts closed in mid-March and the Club temporarily stopped school and school-break programs.

Since local school districts are providing students breakfast and lunch, the Club is giving out food for dinner, weekend meals and snacks. Community members can help by donating essentials like pasta, pasta sauce, rice, beans, mac and cheese, cereal, bread, peanut butter and jelly.

“Most of our families are barely getting by on a good day, so we’re trying to support them as much as we can during this crisis,” said senior vice president Mark Davis.

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To date, more than 275 families have been served.

Each family also gets a bag of fun, educational activities to do at home. Home Depot donated wood crafts and UPS Stores donated books. The Club recently started virtual programming.

The Club is working with Family Service Association of Redlands, Domino’s, Papa John’s, Inland Harvest, Assisteens, National Charity League, iHerb, the Rochford Foundation, and other partners to provide food.

The Club is evaluating whether to reopen for the children of essential workers. The Club is offering temporary virtual programming, including wellness mentoring for high school and middle school girls, coping for high school and middle school boys, cooking, and art.

For more information on the Club’s Family Support Program, go to https://begreatie.org/covid-19/family-support.html

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