This past summer, the Sand Springs Public School System announced a new dismissal time for all elementary schools in the Sand Springs district. This change meant that secondary students would not get out earlier than the younger kids, a problem for many parents whose older children typically watched the younger ones after school.“We were inundated with phone calls from parents who really didn’t know what to do with their kids after school,” said Salvation Army Sand Springs Boys & Girls Club Director Greg Parker.
Immediately after the announcement was made the Club began to work toward a solution to the child care issue facing many in the community. Parker met with school administrators and discussed the concerns of the community and how the Club could help relieve the pressure on parents. A plan was made to extend programs offered at the club and begin new on-site after school programs at local elementary schools.
This project offered flexibility for the community but left the Club scrambling to grow very quickly. “Everyone had to pitch in to make it work, we were shorthanded but all our staff responded great,” noted Parker.
Following a phone call from the administration to district parents directing them to contact the Club for information on the new options, after school programs grew from serving 35 children to 120—in just a few short weeks, surprising Parker.
The two new onsite programs include one at Angus Valley Elementary serving students from Angus and Limestone Elementary Schools and one at Pratt Elementary. Students come in for free time, homework and snacks, structured physical activities and one-to-one tutoring. The established program at the Sand Springs Boys & Girls Club (4403 S. 129th W. Ave.) offers daily programming also, focusing on a routine that includes tutoring, homework, fitness and the arts.
The Sand Springs Boys & Girls Club is glad to host so many activities and programs for the people in the community and is blessed beyond belief with support from residents of Sand Springs. Parker and his Club staff have shown that dedication to “Doing the Most Good” brings exciting—and sometimes unexpected—rewards.
As always, it's a great time to be involved with The Salvation Army Boys and Girls Club of Sand Springs! Call 918-245-2237 to get more information on this or other Club programs.