Tools for Success Program Spotlight: Back-to-School Partners
School has started in Southwest Michigan. Thanks to JA Food Service, Martin’s Super Markets in Saint Joseph, Planet Fitness of Benton Harbor and Whirlpool Corporation—along with a handful of dedicated supporters—hundreds of students received the supplies they needed to get a successful start to the school year. Organizers and volunteers from each of the organizations collected supplies and backpacks from their employees and the community. These supplies ensured that every member of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Benton Harbor was ready to begin school with every advantage.
Youth members and their parents joined Club staff during the first week of school to sort all of the supplies and stuff the bags. Each member received a backpack upon registration for fall programming and signing up to complete their homework. “We know how important school supplies are to student success and boosting member self-confidence as they go back to school,” said Brian Saxton, CEO of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Benton Harbor. “Our goal is for our members have what they need to achieve academic success.”
With over 1,700 children and teens served each year, the Clubs work to ensure that success is within reach of every child, with members on track to graduate with a plan for the future, demonstrate good character/citizenship, and live a healthy lifestyle. Part of promoting the importance of high school graduation and continuing education is making sure that members have all the tools they need to succeed.
Each day at the Clubs, members explore education and career opportunities, while trained instructors provide homework assistance that helps reinforce math and literacy skills and allows members to become self-directed learners.
The strategy to achieve Academic Success is to create opportunities for high-yield learning activities using all programs at the Club through Project Learn. These activities include reading, writing, discussions with knowledgeable adults, tutoring, and games that develop young people’s cognitive skills.