Boys & Girls Club funding still critical for transportation

Published 8:14 am Friday, December 29, 2017

With just days to go before a critical fundraising deadline, the Boys and Girls Club of Elizabethton/Carter County has not met half of its goal to fund the Club’s transportation program.

As of Thursday afternoon, the Club had received just under $12,000 toward the $25,000 goal for the “Start the Bus” campaign. Money raised through the campaign will operate the Club’s transportation program, which allows the Club to pick up children from 11 city and county schools to participate in Club after-school activities.

“Transportation is a critical part of our services,” said Elizabeth Williams, Resource Development and Marketing Director for the Club. “Nothing that we do can take place without it.”

Subscribe to our free email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

“We are really depending on the community to meet that mark,” she added.

If it were not for the buses that run daily to pick children up at the schools and bring them to the Club, many of the children served by the Club’s programs would not be able to participate, according to Williams.

In addition to picking children up for the after-school programs at the Club, during the summer months the transportation program also takes kids on more than 100 field trips.

“If it weren’t for the transportation program many of these kids wouldn’t get to go swimming, they wouldn’t get to go to Bays Mountain, they wouldn’t get to go to many of these places,” Williams said. “Our summer field trips give these children the opportunity to have experiences they would otherwise not have.”

Just a few years ago, the Club was serving at most 30 children a day. Now, the Club serves up to 100 children a day during the school year and more than 170 per day during the summer months.

The Club provides local families with access to quality after-school programs and summer programs which they might not be able to afford otherwise.

Among the many services available for children at the Club are a daily homework help program called “Power Hour” and an evidence-based physical education program called SPARK PE which is designed to get kids involved in an active lifestyle. The Club also offers a nutritious meal program to the children. During the summer months, the Club provides a variety of educational, recreational and life skill building programs to the children.

However, the children have to first get to the Club to take advantage of these programs. That is what makes the transportation program so vital to Club operations, Williams said.

If you want to help get kids to the Club in 2018, you can mail your donation to The Boys & Girls Club, 104 Hudson Drive, Elizabethton, TN 37643, or you can make your donation online at All mailed donations should include the memo “Start the Bus” and have your current mailing information. Williams noted that all donations were tax deductible, but to receive credit for the 2017 year, letters must be postmarked by 12/31/2017 or donations made online before midnight on New Year’s Eve.

Williams said donations can still be made to the transportation program after the Dec. 31 deadline, but any donations received after then will be creditable to the 2018 tax year.