Just in time. Lakeshore Kiwanis saves the dayWednesday, September 19, 2012 by: Jordan Allard
Colette Gray headed to a Kiwanis Club meeting this spring seeking food donations for the Soup Kitchen Community Center and instead walked away with a promise of future financial assistance.
Crucial cash which will permit a program providing a safe surrounding for local youth was delivered to the center on Wednesday afternoon, right on time.
"This funding is vital for us," said Gray, supervisor of the Brighter Beginnings Children's Program.
"Kids here are provided with a safe haven where they can socialize in a healthy environment in a neighborhood that’s not as safe as it should be."
Brighter Beginnings is a program for children between the ages of five to 12-years-of-age whose parents are unemployed.
Youth in need are provided with a healthy snack, fun with friends and educational activities.
Coordinated activities such as arts and crafts are available, tutoring is provided at their homework table and children with special needs or specific dietary requirements are accommodated by the two program staffers.
The Kiwanis Club of Lakeshore donated $2,500 which Gray said will keep the program operational and provide snacks along with activities for children in the program.
"This program gives children a safe place to come after school," said Rod Xilon, president of the Lakeshore Kiwanis Club. "It's in-line with our motto of serving the children of the community by doing anything we can to change their lives in a positive way."
Running from 3:30-5:30 p.m. on Monday through Friday at the Soup Kitchen on 172 James Street, around 30 children are registered with Brighter Beginnings.
The program which strives to provide children with a better start at life has no core funding and Gray said donations are always welcome.
To lend a helping hand to Brighter Beginnings or other programs at the Soup Kitchen they can be reached at 705-942-2694.