Lafayette Be the Change Spotlight :: Introducing Boys & Girls Clubs of Acadiana

Over at Lafayette Mom, our team has been learning about the effects of systematic racism and white privilege. We are committed to amplifying the voices of moms of color in our local community. As we begin taking steps as an organization to effect lasting change, we’re starting a new monthly series to lift up local organizations doing important work serving people of color in our area. Our hope is to highlight what is already being done and raise awareness as to how we as a community can support these organizations in their efforts.

We’re kicking off this new project with one of my personal favorites: Boys & Girls Clubs of Acadiana.

Who is BGCA?

Founded in 1970, Boys and Girls Clubs (BGCA) is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year. It is the leading youth serving organization of Acadiana. BGCA is a 50 year old after-school and summer program for youth ages 6-18. There are 6 Club locations {2 in Lafayette, 1 in New Iberia, 1 in Abbeville, 1 in Opelousas and 1 in Lake Charles} that focus on 3 priority outcome areas: Academic Success, Healthy Lifestyles & Habits and Good Character and Leadership. Registration is open for Fall Programs at www.bgcacadiana.com/welcome

What is the Mission of BGCA?

The mission of BGCA is to “Enable all young people, especially those who need us most, to reach their full potential as productive, caring, and responsible citizens.” The Club provides a safe, affordable environment for kids in the community to engage with highly trained staff, a variety of quality programs and opportunities for a great future.

What does BGCA do?

During the COVID-19 shutdown, the Boys & Girls Clubs of Acadiana closed its doors physically, but were still able to serve kids and families in the community. Club staff reached out to 1200+ Club kids families regarding their needs during the pandemic. BGCA provided 250+ hours of virtual programming for not just Club kids but all kids who wanted to learn. BGCA organized and led 8 meal distribution sites for 8 weeks, handing out over 1.3 Million Meals to all families in need in 4 parishes! Those who needed a device for virtual programs were supplied a Chromebook (thanks to COX) and internet access. Resources regarding mental health, jobs, food and other information were distributed during the pandemic. When it was safe to open back up, BGCA successfully conducted 6 weeks of summer camp at 5 Clubs (25% capacity = 250 kids).

How can you support BGCA?

The most efficient and effective way to support BGCA is by making a donation (either by mailing a check or making an online donation). BGCA intentionally keeps Club membership fees low so that those who are most in need can benefit. For just $200/year a child has access to a safe environment after school and during the summer, positive adult mentors, life enhancing programs, meals, snacks and so much more.

BGCA is accepting donations of the supplies listed below. Items can be dropped off at 1405 W. Pinhook Rd. Suite 108, Lafayette, LA 70503 between the hours of 8am-2pm, Monday- Friday (please call before drop off 337-268-9555).

  • Filler Paper
  • Notecards
  • Stick Notes
  • Lead Pencils
  • Pencil Colors
  • Highlighters
  • Pencil Pouches
  • Hot Glue Gun Sticks
  • Sidewalk Chalk
  • School Paint Brushes
  • Construction Paper
  • Cardstock (Assorted Colors)
  • Index Cards
  • Copy Paper (White or Assorted Colors)
  • Ink Pens
  • Crayons
  • Washable Markers
  • Permanent Markers
  • Dry Erasers
  • Expo Markers (Fine Tip and Chisel Tip)
  • Elmer’s White Glue (Sticks / Large Containers/ 4 oz bottles)
  • Pipe Cleaners
  • Acrylic Paint
  • Tempera Paint
  • Staples
  • Staplers
  • Kleenex
  • Paper Clips
  • Clothespins
  • Scotch Tape
  • 3 Hole-puncher
  • Single Hole punchers
  • Kotex
  • Yoga Mats
  • Duct Tape
  • Paper Plates
  • Paper Cups
  • Q-tips

Learn  more about Boys & Girls Clubs of Acadiana

Website | Facebook | Instagram 

If you’re interested in nominating an organization to be featured in our Lafayette Be the Change Spotlight, please email us at [email protected]