August 5, 2020
Dear Boys & Girls Clubs of San Dieguito Friends and Families,

As we look towards fall, and all the challenges and growth it will bring, we have an opportunity to think about what it means to be strong. To reflect on what “strong” will look like for our community, our families, and our organization, and the kind of strength we want to show our children.
On March 16, 2020 we learned that we would have to close our doors. We called an all-staff meeting to reaffirm that we would do whatever it takes to continue to serve our youth and families. As an outgrowth of that meeting, and the many to follow, we were able to deliver virtual programming to our 6,700-strong membership base throughout our seven specialty programs. Our staff held Zoom check-ins and group activities, tutoring sessions, workouts, Pre-K activities, private and group music lessons, and resilience-building seminars and activities. As an organization we have taken on new roles in our community, such as food distribution, providing access to vital information, and extending educational lifelines to our youth. During our closure we sought out every available resource to develop a safe reopening plan while awaiting the Governor’s decision. On June 15th, we reopened our pools and summer camps to the community. Our youth now have a place to learn, grow, and be part of something joyful again, and our community rests assured that we will do whatever it takes to keep our youth healthy, connected, and resilient.
In 2005 our local schools had to make cuts, and middle school sports were a casualty. We filled in then, just as we are filling in now. For 15 years now we have been serving thousands of middle school athletes through our Big 8 Middle School Sports program, and ensuring that youth have the opportunity to play sports beyond elementary school—through high school, college, and even professionally. The role we played in those events reminds me of the decisions we are making today, as we create plans to remain open for the entire school day as Extended Day Learning Centers. We are challenging ourselves to serve the new needs of our community, and to continue to do whatever it takes for our youth.
Our doors are open again thanks to the tremendous generosity of our giving community. The financial burden on our Clubs has been great, but so are we. Our staff is committed, and our mission is unwavering. I invite you to help us present a united front for our children, and give if you can.

In the coming days you will hear more about our “Back2Clubs” services for the fall and continued specialty programs (Aquatics/Rancho San Dieguito Swim Team, Athletics/BIG 8 Sports, Bulldogs Basketball, Carmel Valley Montessori School, Center for a Healthy Lifestyle, and Youth Arts Academy). Until then, we thank you for your continued support.

Marineke Vandervort
Chief Executive Officer
Boys & Girls Clubs of San Dieguito
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Boys & Girls Clubs of San Dieguito is an IRS 501(c)3 nonprofit organization. All or part of your contribution may be deductible for Federal tax purposes. Tax ID 95-2470435