Archive for kids

Salvation Army Extends Deadline for Final Angel Tree Push

 

The Salvation Army is extending the deadline to return Angels to the Angel Trees at Penn Square and Quail Springs Malls until Thursday, December 15, 2016 at 7 p.m. As of today, almost 300 Angels have not been adopted off of the mall Angel Trees and more than 2,700 have not been returned with their gifts.

The Salvation Army needs your help to ensure no child is forgotten this Christmas. Stop by the Angel Tree at Penn Square or Quail Springs Mall before Dec. 15 and adopt an Angel from the tree. The gifts purchased for the children and seniors on the Angel Tree are often the only Christmas gifts they receive.

“Even though our Angels may never know where these gifts come from, the feeling they get on Christmas morning when they open their gifts will stay with them forever,” said Major Charlotte Gargis, associate area commander of The Salvation Army Central Oklahoma. “Once again we ask for the community’s help to make Christmas bright for families in need so no child or senior is forgotten.”

On average, 15 to 20 percent of Angels are not returned because they are lost or forgotten. The Salvation Army is in need of new clothing items and new, unwrapped toys to fill forgotten Angels, ages 6-14, this Christmas.

Toy and clothing donations may be brought to the mall Angel Trees or Plaza Mayor at the Crossroads, 7000 Crossroads Boulevard, Oklahoma City, OK 73149, until December 17 at 4 p.m. The Salvation Army’s Angel Tree Workshop is located on the east side of the mall, in the space formerly occupied by Montgomery Wards.

The Angel Tree families will begin receiving their gifts on December 19 through December 22. Each family will collect their gifts as well as receive a box of food to prepare a Christmas meal.

For questions on how you can help ensure no child is forgotten this Christmas, please contact Major Gargis at 405-246-1113 or charlotte.gargis@uss.salvationarmy.org. Your donation will bring hope to a family this Christmas.

 

National BGCA Week Club Kid Feature: NJ

Meet NJ

NJ - WebNajahahn, known to everyone as “NJ”, is no stranger to The Salvation Army Boys & Girls Club. He began attending the Club at five years old and found a place where he could have fun.

“I like that I get to come and play basketball in the gym, and make new friends.”

But now at 14, he has found a place where he can not only have fun but also pursue his passion.

Six years ago, staff member Josh Huling started a photography group in the Club with his personal camera equipment. The kids started off with disposable cameras and learned about the fundamentals of photography.

In 2012, NJ entered a photography competition and won. That was when photography became more than an interest. It quickly became a passion and most likely a career path.

Since winning that competition, NJ has won around $5,000 for photography equipment and classes. He will soon begin taking classes at Rose State or OCCC with his most recent competition win.

NJ has also been invited to The Salvation Army Youth Councils – a spiritual retreat for young people in The Salvation Army’s Arkansas and Oklahoma Division – to be a part of the communications team and take photos during the retreat.

Because of your support of The Salvation Army Boys & Girls Club, young people just like NJ find what they are passionate about every day. If you would like to ensure more Great Futures are created at our club, get involved as a volunteer or donate now.

National BGCA Week Club Kid Feature: Mackenzie

Meet Mackenzie

Mackenzie - WebMackenzie is no stranger to The Salvation Army Boys & Girls Club. She’s attended the club for five years along with her brothers, one of which is a staff member.

Getting help with her homework by the staff and volunteers is one of her favorite things about the club.

“I like getting help with the things I need, like homework. I struggle with a lot in certain subjects and they help me with it.”

Mackenzie also had help from staff preparing for the Youth of the Year competition – Boys & Girls Club of America’s yearly recognition program that awards scholarships to Club members who exemplify the values of leadership, academic excellence and healthy lifestyles. As an eighth grader, she’s one of the youngest contestants vying to win scholarships for college.

While Mackenzie did not advance in the competition, she allowed herself to be pushed out of her comfort zone because she has a desire to go to college.

Because of your support of The Salvation Army Boys & Girls Club, students like Mackenzie who want to attend college have a place where they are encouraged to achieve their goals. If you would like to ensure more Great Futures are created at our club, get involved as a volunteer or donate now.

National BGCA Week Club Kid Feature: Delmone

Meet Delmone

Delmone - WebTwo of Delmone’s favorite things about The Salvation Army Boys & Girls Club are that he gets to make new friends and play basketball. It doesn’t take long to see why with his outgoing personality and positive attitude.

Since he began attending the club last year, Delmone has been introduced to baseball and dodgeball by the University of Central Oklahoma Baseball team. After playing baseball with a real team, Delmone now wants to try out for his school team.

Being a team player won’t be hard for him since Delmone has learned about it from his favorite club staff member, Mr. Lou.

“Mr. Lou taught me how to do good stuff and how to help people when they need help. And sportsmanship,” Delmone eagerly shared.

But the interest to excel does not just apply to sports. Delmone works hard on his schoolwork and takes advantage of the tutoring the staff and volunteers provide.

“I get help with my reading – because I don’t like reading – and science. I like science but I’m just not very good at it.”

He also likes social studies, math, history and geography. And, when Delmone grows up, he wants to be a firefighter just like his great-great-grandpa.

You can’t help but smile when he tells why he thinks the staff at the club are so great.

“What I like about the staff is they help me with my stuff, tell me where I’m supposed to be, keep me safe and I have responsibilities here.”

Because of your support of The Salvation Army Boys & Girls Club, kids like Delmone have a positive, safe place to go after school. If you would like to ensure more Great Futures are created at our club, get involved as a volunteer or donate now.

National BGCA Week Club Kid Feature: Andria

Meet Andria

Andria - WebAndria has attended The Salvation Army Boys & Girls Club for four years and loves it because it’s a “fun place.” Some of her favorite activities at the Club are playing basketball and football as well as talking with her friends. But her most favorite thing is attending camp during the summer because there is lots of swimming and free concessions.

Because she attends our club, Andria was introduced to Sunbeams – a program for girls similar to Girl Scouts – and has earned badges for completing different activities and attended a week of Sunbeams Camp last summer.

When she grows up, Andria wants to be a Pediatric Nurse since she isn’t afraid of blood unless it is her own.

Because of your support of The Salvation Army Boys & Girls Club, kids like Andria have a positive, safe place to go after school. If you would like to ensure more Great Futures are created at our club, get involved as a volunteer or donate now.

Staff Spotlight – Andy Hale

AndyAndy Hale was just having a casual conversation with a guy at the gym but little did he know it put into motion something bigger for him, his wife and their three children.

That conversation brought him to be the director of the Oklahoma City Salvation Army Boys & Girls Club where Andy directly impacts 70 youth each day with recreation, education, spiritual & character development activities, protecting them from drug abuse and gang violence.

But Andy isn’t new to youth ministry. With a background as a college basketball coach, he has a deep-rooted passion for inspiring young people to be the best they could be both in sports and life.

“Being a basketball coach at three different universities, I always represented the institution with pride and dignity,” said Hale. “I in turn encouraged each student athlete I worked with and influenced to do the exact same.”

Growing up on the south side of Oklahoma City, Andy has truly found a position that perfectly intersects his past experiences and passion – creating a safe, fun environment for inner city kids where their lives can be positively affected each and every day.

“God will put me where He wants me, when He wants me there.”
His total faith in God’s timing and plan shows through as he talks about his family, the Club’s kids and the community surrounding them.

If you would like to make a difference in the lives of our young people, you can:

  • Volunteer as a mentor, coach a sports team, teach a life skills class, lead an arts & crafts activity or entertain the kids with a musical or theatrical performance.
  • Provide snacks, prizes, arts & crafts and sports equipment for our youth to use while at the Club. Items can be dropped off at 2808 S.E. 44th, Oklahoma City, OK  73129.
  • Click the Donate Now button above and financially support our Boys & Girls Club.