Boys and Girls Club may have to close location

By Elizabeth Donatelli - bio | email

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - As the economy continues to struggle, so does a local organization which gives thousands of students opportunities they wouldn't have otherwise. Now that group needs your help or it will be left with no choice except to shut its doors.

Several hundred kids will play at the Salvation Army Boys and Girls Clubs every day this summer and more than 2,000 throughout the school year.

"I have fun over here because I make a lot of friends and I can have something to do over the summer," said one girl who goes to the club.

"The Boys and Girls Club is first of all a safe place to come and for kids to have fun here this is the first place I ever played pool and I have fun playing basketball and stuff," said another girl.

Without the club, many of the kids say they wouldn't be doing much except watching TV. At four locations in the Metro, the kids play sports, learn how to use the computer, and even study a bit during the school year.

Even with all the good intentions, these programs are in danger and may not survive this economy.

"We've seen some of our funding sources some disappeared in the last year," said Geoff Norman executive director of the Salvation Army Boys and Girls Club. "Some, you know, cut 10-15 percent, as well as our fundraising is down over the last year."

Without more money, the Salvation Army will cut hours and possibly close one of its four locations as early as September.

"Kids will be on the street or doing something different and not in a positive place where they're going to be cared for, have programs and have an opportunity to grow and prosper," said Norman.

You can donate to the Boys and Girls Club Thursday July 16th. WAVE 3 is partnering with the Salvation Army for a phone-a-thon where you can call in and donate from 6:00 a.m. - 7:30 p.m.

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