Oklahoma City, OK (April 2, 2020) – The mission of the Salvation Army Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Oklahoma is “to enable all young people, especially those who need us most, to reach their full potential as productive, caring, responsible citizens.” Which, when you add in a full-blown public health crisis, makes fulfilling this mission look a little more creative.
So, what is a Salvation Army Boys & Girls Club to do when their community has been given a “shelter in place” directive along with guidelines from the CDC that include prohibiting groups of 10 or more?
The Salvation Army Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Oklahoma, including Lawton, Oklahoma City, and Shawnee, had to think outside the box to continue to serve the “youth who need us most.”
- Grab and Go Meals & Activity Bags: The public schools in the area have done a great job of providing lunches for children, yet dinner was not being provided. Through a partnership with the local food banks, The Salvation Army Boys & Girls Clubs began offering grab and go meals and snacks at dinner time via a drive-thru at the clubs. In addition to handing out meals to anyone who has a child in their car, the staff has assembled activity bags to give out and ensures new activities are available daily. School supplies such as coloring pencils, markers or crayons, a rule, scissors, glue sticks, pencils and erasers for homeschooling are also included.
- Virtual Programming: If children and teens cannot be in the Club, then it’s time to take the programming to them. Virtually! Staff created and continues to share, content on YouTube, Facebook, TikTok, and Instagram to provide activities and educational enhancement for the families being served.
- Serving Families Facing Homelessness: Boys & Girls Club staff members are taking programming to the Salvation Army Family Shelter. Activities and a Club-like experience for the school-aged children and youth residing in the shelter with their families are being offered.
Those “youth that need us most”… The Salvation Army is finding they are everywhere and is doing our best to be a light to them during this uncertain time.
Click here to learn about The Salvation Army’s national response to COVID-19.
If you would like to help support The Salvation Army’s efforts, please go to give.salvationarmyaok.org/COVID-19 or Click here to help The Salvation Army continue meeting needs in your community.