April 8, 2020:
As you know, the COVID-19 outbreak is impacting us worldwide, but this letter is to inform you of how it is impacting Gene Slay’s Girls & Boys Club. With no way to ensure social distancing, we have had to close our programs until further notice to ensure the safety of our members, families, and community. Knowing all the essential roles we may serve in the lives of our kids; we are implementing creative solutions to fulfill our mission of empowering youth to reach their full potential.
Some of the ways that GSGBC is continuing our work:
- MEALS GSGBC started serving grab-and-go meals to children in the City of St. Louis under the age of 18 on Wednesday, March 18th. We partnered with Mayor Krewson’s office and St. Louis Public Schools and are an official Pandemic Meal Distribution site in Soulard & Dutchtown.
- #DigItAll WEB-BASED YOUTH DEVELOPMENT Through our social media platforms, our Youth Development Specialists, Learning Specialists, and the rest of our team are creating engaging content that will provide parents and kids with activities that support their academic and social growth. We are in the process of creating hard copy learning packets for our children who have no access to internet and computers in their homes. This will allow children to participate in the academic lesson plans set by St. Louis Public Schools.
- CHECK-IN CALLS Our program team has developed a check-in call schedule to minimize the isolation that our kids experience as well as to determine what additional needs our kids may have. Our professional and trained staff are ready to provide any referrals and appropriate interventions. We’re reminding everyone that isolation does not mean solitude.
- SUMMER LEARNING LOSS Every summer, our program empowers the youth we serve to avoid the Summer Learning Loss. Summer Learning Loss is responsible for more than 50% of the Achievement Gap experienced by low-income individuals. This summer, that need will be even greater to make up for the turmoil affecting this academic year. Our team is working extremely hard to design a comprehensive and dynamic Summer Program, during this period of quarantine.
- ADJUSTED DATES The Annual GSGBC Golf Tournament has been postponed to August 3rd, 2020 at Norwood Hills Country Club.
We hope that you and yours are well. In order to be thorough, GSGBC will be following the recommendations of The City of St. Louis Dept. of Health (314) 612-5100 while executing our current services. The safety and care of children and community is our priority. Proactively we are posting updates regarding COVID-19, to our members, and current events to our website as well as our social media accounts—Facebook and Twitter. We look forward to once again operating at full capacity while we empower our youth and contribute to our community. In the meantime, you can continue your support by visiting our website to donate and stay engaged with GSGBC. Lastly, Andy Blassie, our Board President will be assisting me by looking at the CARE Act that was just passed by congress and became law. This forgivable loan will assist GSGBC with covering our payroll during these times. This will ensure that staff will remain employed and serving our children in ever changing ways.
Thank you for your continued generosity and dedication to our mission!