BGCCF Update | July 13, 2020
Good friends,

It’s mid July, and again we find ourselves in the dog days of summer, this year made even more oppressive by the persistence and uncertainty of the COVID virus. Numbers in Florida have been on the rise again, and no definitive end is in sight. This is not a time for the faint of heart.

As a longtime runner, I have always been encouraged by this verse from Hebrews 12: “Let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us.

Know this: your Boys & Girls Club organization has chosen to not to be discouraged, to take a long view, and to run with patience the race that is set before us.

We’ve shared with you extensively in this space the modifications we’ve made to our programming to keep our Club members and staff safe. We have suffered temporary setbacks along the way—at times others might have opted to close the Clubs entirely to remove all possible risk. Yet we persist because we know that our children need us, and face even greater risks without the lifeline that our Clubs provide.

Here’s what we’re also doing: focusing on the future. As interminable as this pandemic seems, it will end, and the needs of our community’s children will be even more pronounced on the other side of it. So while others are retrenching, we push forward in faith, knowing that we have a unique responsibility as the largest provider of after-school and summer programming to children from low-income families in our region.

Our faith in the future is manifested in the continuing construction of our Jacqueline Bradley and Clarence Otis Family Branch, which I believe will be the most beautiful Club in the United States (promise I’m not biased). Designed pro-bono by SchenkelShultz , the Club will have a special focus on enriching children’s lives through the arts. We expect to open in February 2021 to serve the children of West Lakes.
Jacqueline Bradley and Clarence Otis Family Branch
Meanwhile, our friends in Brevard County are making brilliant progress on the restoration of Titusville’s historic Carter House, which will serve the children in one of that city’s oldest but neediest neighborhoods. The community has truly rallied around this project with generous donations of labor and materials, and we hope to welcome our first members there in 2021 as well. An analogous effort is underway in Oviedo, where the community is raising funds to renovate a building donated by the Antioch Missionary Baptist Church. The support we’ve seen for these projects bespeaks the public’s unwavering faith that every child deserves a nurturing Club home to call his or her own.
Carter House
In the meantime, we’ll continue taking every possible measure in our Clubs to raise up our children while keeping them safe. We’ll continue providing weekend food boxes, as long as we are able, for families, and emergency financial support in select cases of hardship. And we’ll continue to set goals and move confidently toward a future free of coronavirus, but abounding with children who need our services.

Thank you for joining us in our mission. We’re running strong and patient and steady, and we will not lose faith nor be discouraged. 
Gary Cain
President & CEO
Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Florida
About Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Florida
The mission of Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Florida is to inspire and enable all young people, especially those from disadvantaged circumstances, to realize their full potential as productive, responsible and caring citizens. At our 36 Clubs, we provide a safe and nurturing Club experience every day after school, and all summer long, for more than 16,000 children.
Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Florida |