Jodi Rave: Boys and Girls Clubs grow on reservations
"At least 140,000 Native youth participate in Boys and Girls Club centers across the United States, at more than 220 clubs in 25 states.

The growth is astounding, considering only about a dozen clubs existed in Indian Country some 12 years ago, said Joe Cordova, project director for Boys and Girls Club in Indian Country, a consulting firm in Crofton, Md.

The clubs “give kids an opportunity, a place to go after school and in the summer with programs and services on a regular basis, where otherwise they might not have anything to do,” said Cordova, a former CEO of the National Boys and Girls Club. Youth receive guidance and participate in leadership programs and field trips.

Last year, 18 new clubs were started in Native communities, their growth spurred on by positive outcomes for Native youth, a disadvantaged group in which 30 percent do not finish high school and only 17 percent attend college. Native youth also suffer suicide rates 62 percent higher than all other racial or ethnic groups in the country."

Get the Story:
Jodi Rave: Example to build on - Teen named ‘youth of year' as Native membership in Boys and Girls Club rises (The Missoulian 2/12)

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