Grant helps native youth with out of doors actions, journey

0
25

Two local youth organizations are putting a leisure grant to good use this summer.

The Boys & Girls Clubs of the Olympic Peninsula and YMCA of Sequim continue to offer a variety of camps, trips and adventures through the nearly $210,000 Summer Experiences and Enrichment for Kids (SEEK) grant from the Washington Parks & Recreation Association and the Association of Washington Cities at .

The two agencies applied to the City of Sequim for the grant.

At the Sequim Boys & Girls Club, 400 W. Fir St., staff report that after two summers confined to the clubhouse and small, local destinations, they are happy to return to field trips and outdoor recreation.

Submitted Photo Boys & Girls Club Kindergarten and First Grade members have been visiting Graysmarsh Farm for the past few weeks as part of their Summer Field Trip program.

More than 100 children have signed up for the club’s morning camp, with the SEEK grant helping to reduce the camp fee from $15 to $10, said Janet Gray, resource development director for the Boys & Girls Clubs. She said the parents told the staff they appreciated the discount.

The Sequim Club’s summer began with a Solstice Field Day and luncheon at Carrie Blake Community Park, where the club serves a free weekday lunchtime lunch to all children under the age of 18. The staff organized two field trips a week to address the restrictions during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Kindergarteners and first years went to Graysmarsh to pick berries and with a few other classes to Olympic Game Farm. Older club members traveled separately to Seattle for the Seattle Mariners and Storm games.

Gray said the club’s Garden Club members were given a special field trip to the Woodcock Demonstration Garden with volunteers from the local master gardeners.

Submitted Photo Linda Schroeder, a member of the Boys & Girls Club, visits Clallam County Master Gardeners’ Woodcock Demonstration Garden during a recent field trip.

The club’s junior ranger program launched a few weeks ago for 9-12 year olds and they explore local national parks, go hiking, comb beach, explore tide pools and learn about ecosystems and land management.

The club recently wrapped up Water Week to stay cool and celebrate Discovery’s “Shark Week,” Gray said. She said they enjoyed playing in a shark fountain at the Sequim club’s playground and taking a trip to Sol Duc.

For more information on the Olympic Peninsula Boys & Girls Clubs, visit bgc-op.org.

At the Sequim YMCA, 610 N. Fifth Ave., staff report their summer program is going great. They offer three week-long summer day camps for children ages 6 to 12, with one camp running July 11-15 only. Camps are full August 1-5 and August 15-19.

Submitted Photo Boys & Girls Club members, from left, Bee Mao, Paisley Taylor, Hunter Carleson, Daniel Salanoa, Russell Thomas, Alex Salanoa and JD Kessler enjoy a ferry ride en route to a Seattle Storm basketball game.

The grant-funded Find Your Trail outdoor leadership program includes 25 kids who hiked more than 20 miles and learned about a variety of hiking topics, said Gail Sumpter, YMCA of Sequim branch manager.

The club also continues to recruit youth lifeguards; Visit olympicpeninsulaymca.org/careers for more information.

Submitted Photo Club members of the Boys & Girls Club of Sequim are keeping their cool and celebrating Shark Week with an inflatable shark in their playground.