At 13-years-old, Waverly is busy. She’s a straight-A student, and is involved in ETS (Educational Talent Search), the Get Ready college prep program, Badminton, Band and Drama. And that’s just at school.
At Club she’s just as active. Since joining at age 6, she’s been involved in countless programs and pitched in to help with many special events. Waverly has been a member at both the Mt. Airy Club and the East Side Club.
As a Keystone leader she helped plan National Night Out, the Hmong Resource Fair, JAM (Juvenile Arthritis March) and Holiday Dinners. She’s also been engaged in community service projects and fundraising efforts.
Waverly’s father is Hmong and her mother is Lao. Like many Club members, she comes from a family balancing traditions from two Asian cultures while living in America. Through her childhood, Waverly’s family spoke English. But she still had to learn to balance life as an American girl with the expectations of two rich and distinct Asian cultures. Club has been a safe place for her to learn balance and meet people who face similar challenges.
Marcus looks up to his older cousins Collin and Elijah, and he couldn’t wait to turn 6-years-old so he could go to Club like them. That happened this year and Marcus now belongs to the Jerry Gamble Club.
He loves spending time in the education center reading and playing with friends, and the art room creating special gifts for his parents. But he also has a passion for learning new sports through the Nike Play Daily program. “I like to play basketball like LeBron James at the Club,” said Marcus.
Marcus attends Elizabeth Hall School in north Minneapolis. His favorite cartoons are Fanboy and Chum Chum, and SpongeBob SquarePants, and his pick for best movie is Cars. He also likes playing video games on the Wii and Xbox 360.
“I like Friday Fun because we eat grilled hot dogs,” said Marcus when asked about his favorite thing at Club. He looks forward to his little sister, Kalise, being old enough to join Club so they can have fun together after school.
Alea has been a part of the Club family her whole life. But last year, she finally turned 6 and became an official member with her very own Club card.
Now, as a 7-year-old, Alea attends the West Side Club daily with her brother Xavier and older cousin Carissa.
“I love to come to the Club because it’s where all my friends are and we get to have fun everyday,” said Alea. While she and her friends are busy with many Club programs, Alea’s favorites are Arts & Crafts, Girls Will be Girls and Academic All-Stars.
Alea is a little girl who loves life and learning new things. Dancing, swimming and watching TV are some of her favorite activities. When she grows up, Alea wants to be “a Cowgirl.”
For 11-year-old Lache, Club is a place for both work and play. “Having a Boys and Girls Club in our school is the best,” she said. “I can just go there right after school to get homework done and dance with all my friends.”
Lache has been a member of the Olson Beacon Club for the past 5 years. She’s an active member of the Cheerleading and Dance Teams, and says Club gives her a chance to express her creative energy after being in school all day. She also loves having an adult mentor who tutors her in math each day.
As a leader in the Torch Club, Lache helps teach younger members leadership skills and the importance of community service. And she learns about being a positive young woman in today’s society through the SMART Girls program.
When she’s not at Club, Lache loves to shop, dance, sing, watch movies and play Wii games with her family.