Gift to Help Upgrade Technology and Infrastructure, Build Capacity and Add New Clubs
PHOENIX (March 17, 2022) – Boys & Girls Clubs of the Valley is preparing youth for great futures with help from MacKenzie Scott.
The philanthropist and novelist awarded a combined $281 million to 62 local Boys & Girls Clubs, including Boys & Girls Clubs of the Valley, and Boys & Girls Clubs of America.
BGCAZ will leverage the funds to invest in next-generation technologies and infrastructure improvements at its 27 Clubs, along with capacity-building for high-demand programs.
“To say that we are humbled by this gift would be an understatement. MacKenzie Scott’s investment in our Valley Clubs recognizes the critical impact that after-school care has on a student and their family. Parents can work or go to school and know that their Club kid will be safe, exploring their STEM, arts and sports interests in a second home they love,” said Marcia Mintz, BGCAZ’s president and CEO.
“The pandemic underscored not only the digital, social and educational divides our members face; it also showed us how much work our Clubs needed to do to meet the needs of today’s students. We are working to invest more in the technology and programming for our members,” continued Mintz.
In 2020, thousands of youth transitioned from school to remote learning at Boys & Girls Clubs of the Valley locations. Mintz said many of the Clubs’ systems struggled to keep up with the technology demands. BGCAZ plans to make infrastructure improvements, build much-needed capacity in STEM and other programs that advance learning, and deliver social-emotional skill-building that is critical to youth development.
Given the Valley’s explosive growth, Boys & Girls Clubs of the Valley is planning for the future to meet youth and families where they are with new Clubs, too.
These investments have never been more important, Mintz said, because today’s youth face unprecedented obstacles. Studies show that a lack of access to technology, positive mentors and guidance, food insecurity, and other factors can cause long-term setbacks and trauma for millions of young people.
“Our Clubs create equity for our kids by offering them access to educational and recreational programs, all the way through internships that will lead them to college and careers. Ms. Scott’s investment in our Clubs will help us solidify a foundation of belonging and help youth and teens create a pathway to a great future,” said Mintz.
About Boys & Girls Clubs of America
For 160 years, Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA.org) has provided a safe place for kids and teens to learn and grow. Clubs offer caring adult mentors, fun and friendship, and high-impact youth development programs on a daily basis during critical non-school hours. Boys & Girls Clubs programming promotes academic success, good character and citizenship, and healthy lifestyles. More than 4,700 Clubs serve 4.6 million young people through Club membership and community outreach. Clubs are located in cities, towns, public housing and on Native lands throughout the country, and serve military families in BGCA-affiliated Youth Centers on U.S. military installations worldwide. National headquarters are located in Atlanta. Learn more about Boys & Girls Clubs of America on Facebook and Twitter.
About Boys & Girls Clubs of the Valley
Boys & Girls Clubs of the Valley offers affordable after-school and summer programs for 13,000-plus young people in grades K-12. At Clubs across the Valley, BGCAZ provides award-winning programs designed to change the lives of young people. For more than 75 years, BGCAZ has been creating equity and opportunity for youth through academic, social, and workforce opportunities. We help young people make healthy decisions and focus on social and emotional development to build resilient young adults. Most importantly, we work to develop strong character and leadership skills by creating positive connections to caring adults and their communities. For more information: visit bgcaz.org or follow us on social media at @BGCArizona.