Joymaker challenge brings toys to local kids in need

The  Boys & Girls Club provides a positive place for all youth.

As a part of their Santa’s Workshop Holiday Party teens at the Boys and Girls Club taught younger club members about giving back. Teens helped younger members wrap gifts which were given to children at Casa Pacifica.

The teens have been working with Branch Director Lea Cobb, Teen Directors Abel and Katie and volunteer Madhu Bajaj of Fastsigns of Ventura who was selected as a Kindness Ambassador and Joymaker by “generationOn”.

“Engaging young people in service is a priority for my life’s work,” says Bajaj. “When we get involved in our community, no doubt the community is strengthened, but so are the lives of the people involved. From new skills, confidence, friendships, job opportunities and much more, service supports our teens in leading vibrant, meaningful lives.”

One teen provided insight into the importance of being kind to self. “It’s challenging being a teen. Sometimes we are too hard on ourselves. It’s important we remember to be kind to ourselves.” Other teens added in specifics on how to be kind to self such as eating well, exercising, managing stress, and avoiding peer pressure.

The teens also agreed on the importance of kindness and making time for others as a way of building relationships. For their kindness service project, they decided to create a kindness tree to capture ways to express kindness and share kindness stories. They invited younger club members to participate and taught them about kindness.

Additionally, they wrote letters to people important in their life like a parent, teacher, friend etc. and to community helpers. After learning about Standing Rock and #NoDAPL the teens decided to write letters of support to the water protectors.

For their participation in the Joymaker challenge, the teens researched local groups where they could give the toys donated by Hasbro and decided on Casa Pacifica. They helped younger club members wrap gifts and talked with them about the importance of helping others and giving back to your community.

Pattie Birmingham, CEO says “We were so pleased to participate in this program.  We strive to instill Good Character & Citizenship values with our youth in all that we do and this program was a perfect match!  These youth will be the future leaders of our community.  Learning to care about others will be pivotal to the direction that they take.”

The Joymaker Challenge is facilitated by “generationOn” and sponsored by Hasbro, details at Through Dec.23 for each kid or teen who engages in service, Hasbro will donate a toy or game to Toys for Tots – up to 1 million dollars!

The  Boys & Girls Club Greater Ventura provides a positive place for all youth, especially those who need us most, and quality programs to help them become healthy, responsible, confident and productive members of our community. We provide critical youth development services to 1,200 members every year.  Your contribution provides Academic Success, Good Character & Citizenship and Healthy Lifestyle programs to the youth of our community!


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