Father Charles P. Maxwell launched the Boys’ Club of St. Louis on October 3, 1929 on the second floor of St. Vincent De Paul’s Catholic School. Under the sponsorship of the Catholic Archdiocese of St. Louis, Fr. Maxwell’s new club was the first officially affiliated Boys’ Club in the State of Missouri.
By 1933, the Club had an active membership of over 1,200 boys. It had proved itself worthy of community support and was admitted to the St. Louis Community Chest – the forerunner to the United Way. Over the next 30 years, the Club moved a number of times before completing and occupying the current 36,000+ square foot facility at 2524 South 11th Street in 1959. In May 2006, to honor Eugene P. Slay, who served as President and CEO from 1993 until his passing in 2011 and dedicated his life to making things better for the kids, the club was renamed the Gene Slay’s Boys’ Club of St. Louis. To reflect its expansion to serve girls on a full time and permanent basis, the Club was renamed the Gene Slay’s Girls & Boys Club of St. Louis in 2016.
Initially a recreation center and safe haven, GSGBC continues to meet the needs of the changing demographics through program enhancement. GSGBC provides high quality and holistic programs that respect and meet the needs of at-risk youth through academics, leadership building, health, athletics, and the arts. GSGBC improves the lives of at-risk and underserved youth who subsist in South St. Louis, while assisting them in the creation of a future free from fear of violence.