Volunteers, kids and parents all had a ball at the 5th annual Dunkirk Boys and Girls Club Day for Kids. Around 100 families came for the games, crafts and entertainment.
Jody Briggs, the director of the Boys and Girls Club, said, "The purpose of Boys and Girls Club Day for Kids is for parents to spend quality time with their kids in a low cost and fun environment. We would like to see this become a national holiday. There is Mother's Day, Father's Day and Grandparents Day but there isn't a day celebrating kids."
The event was primarily funded and run by donations and volunteer efforts. Hot dogs were donated by Shaun Heenan, cookies by Petri's, and juice from Cliffstar and volunteers came from the community as well as from SUNY Fredonia. This free, fun-filled family event included bounce houses, arts and crafts, music, games, prizes, food, and activities by Chautauqua Striders and Chautauqua Opportunities and child ID cards from the Dunkirk Police Department.
There was much fun to be had inside and out at the Boys and Girls Club Day for Kids Saturday. Here is the kids versus adults tug-o-war.
More than 20 volunteers came from SUNY Fredonia's Delta Chi Fraternity and Sister Circle to give back to their community. This is their second year volunteering for this event. Last year Delta Chi won a community service award for their dedication to the community.
"The SUNY volunteers are wonderful; we couldn't do it without them," Kim Killian of the Boys and Girls Club said. "We count on them every year, they are amazing."
"We love helping out the community and the kids," Louis Jackson of Delta Chi said. "It is so rewarding to give back."
Dawn Bush of Sister Circle said, "We love giving back and interacting with the community and it fulfills our primary goal," which according to their matching T-shirts is to bond, empower and support.
Joyce Harvard Smith, the coordinator of volunteer services at SUNY Fredonia and founder of Sister Circle on campus, said "I want people to see the good that students do."
There will be a community service fair in the Williams Center multipurpose room on Wednesday, Sept. 29 from 10 a.m. to 2p.m. for all interested students to sign up to volunteer at any of the 34 participating agencies.
Research shows that when adults spend meaningful time with their kids, it helps them develop a positive self-image and a sense of belonging, usefulness and purpose. However, many adults don't have the time or resources to do as much for the children in their lives as they may want to.
So Boys & Girls Clubs of America created the Day for Kids to build stronger relationships between adults and children hosting fun family activities across the country. Day for Kids provides a chance for every adult to take a break, celebrate, and renew their commitment to their children. Jody Briggs said, "The kids come here and they don't want to leave."
While Day for Kids is celebrated Sept. 25, every day should be a day to share a moment, create a memory and make a child's day. For information about the Boys & Girls Clubs call 366-1061 or visit at 55 Benton St.