I’ve been talking a lot recently about the same thing. Over, and over, and over. Kids need a place to really belong.
Am I just paying lip service to Boys and Girls Clubs mission and vision? Is our intentional programming just a clever disguise for what is ultimately just daycare?
Let me ask you this: Have you ever belonged to a club or a team?
If you think about that experience there’s usually a sense of meaning, pride, connection, purpose, a cool factor, and a sense that you matter. Feel that? It’s the feeling of belonging.
Without belonging, we are all at risk of succumbing to what we are most afraid of: loneliness and isolation. In Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, belonging is essential for the development of self-esteem and self-confidence. That’s because without feeling like we belong – in a group, community or even in a single positive relationship – self-worth doesn’t develop. Belonging matters.
All the activities we do at BGC – all the dodgeball, arts and crafts, field trips, sports, cooking lessons, guitar jam sessions, and more – is where belonging happens for our kids. That’s why talking about belonging isn’t just lip service, and why BGC is not just daycare. Delivering belonging to children and youth is the most important thing we do because it is the one thing that all other development depends on.
So, the next time you’re thinking about making a donation to help kids, think of Boys and Girls Clubs. Because you belong here too!