In the heart of the Mississippi Delta, where determination meets opportunity, a visionary alliance has formed to create a brighter future for the youth of Belzoni and Humphreys County. Last week, a group of passionate individuals gathered to chart a course toward a new Boys & Girls Club in the region. This dynamic team consisted of David Dallas, CEO of Boys & Girls Clubs of the Mississippi Delta, Clara Reed, Founder and Pastor of Upper Room Fellowship Ministries, Inc. in Belzoni, MS, Basha Terry, Special Projects Coordinator for Boys & Girls Clubs of the Mississippi Delta, and John Wallace, Board Treasurer for the organization.
The meeting was a pivotal moment for a transformative project that promises to change the lives of countless young people in the area. But it wasn't just about discussions; it was about action and commitment to making a difference.
A Generous Gift: $150,000 Towards a Brighter Future
In a profound display of support for this initiative, Upper Room Fellowship Ministries, Inc. presented the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Mississippi Delta with a remarkable gift: a check for $150,000. This generous contribution is part of a three-year commitment to providing vital after-school and out-of-school Club services for youth aged 6-18.
This remarkable donation signifies more than just financial support; it is a symbol of faith in the potential of Belzoni's youth. It underscores the belief that every child deserves access to opportunities that will empower them to succeed.
A New Beginning: Boys & Girls Club in Belzoni in 2024
The impact of this meeting extends far beyond its immediate results. It marks the beginning of a new chapter for Belzoni and its youth. Beginning in 2024, young people in Belzoni will have the opportunity to join the Boys & Girls Club, a space where they can learn, grow, and thrive. This exciting development has been made possible through the generosity and vision of Upper Room Fellowship Ministries and the dedication of Boys & Girls Clubs of the Mississippi Delta.
Quote from Clara Reed: A Prayer Answered
"To God Be the Glory! I want to inform our community and its citizens of a prayer that God has answered. Upper Room Fellowship Ministries has been blessed by God with an opportunity to embark upon a new adventure with The Boys & Girls Club of America. I have seen the hardship of our boys and girls in Humphreys County as they struggle with education and the lack of community programs that are needed to help them evolve into productive young adults and responsible citizens."
These words from Clara Reed echo the sentiment of countless community members who have longed for a brighter future for their children.
Boys & Girls Clubs of the Mississippi Delta: A Beacon of Hope
Boys & Girls Clubs of the Mississippi Delta is a part of Boys & Girls Clubs of America, an organization that provides professionally trained staff to ensure the development of positive self-esteem, proper values, and healthy life skills for young people. Presently, the organization operates eight Club sites in the Delta, serving over 2000 registered members.
CEO David Dallas expressed his enthusiasm for the collaboration: "We have been talking with Reed and her team at the church for almost a year now. Their desire to minister to the youth of their community led them to us. Not only have they provided us with a generous donation to begin establishing a Club charter, they are providing a wonderful space for us to conduct programming."
Basha Terry, Special Project Coordinator for the organization, will lead the staffing and training for youth development professionals for the new Club in Belzoni. She emphasized the mission: "Our mission is to enable all young people in the Delta, particularly in those communities that need us most, to reach their full potential as caring, productive, and responsible citizens."
Investing in Our Future
A study conducted by the Social Research and School of Public Health at the University of Michigan found that for every $1 invested in Boys & Girls Clubs, there is a return of $9.60 in current and future earnings, as well as cost savings to American communities. This return is primarily driven by improved grades, reduced at-risk behaviors, and increased earnings of club members and their parents. Nationally, Boys & Girls Clubs invest $1.4 billion annually in operating costs, resulting in $13.8 billion in lifetime benefits to youth, families, and society.
Anticipating a Bright Future: Club Opening in Spring 2024
The journey has begun, and the path is clear. Registration for the new Boys & Girls Club in Belzoni will commence in the coming months, with the anticipated Club opening scheduled for the spring semester of 2024. Together, the community, Upper Room Fellowship Ministries, and Boys & Girls Clubs of the Mississippi Delta are writing a story of hope, empowerment, and resilience.
We invite you to be part of this remarkable journey as we build a better, brighter future for Belzoni's youth. Your support, whether through volunteering, donations, or sharing our mission, will help shape the destinies of our children, one opportunity at a time.
Stay tuned for more updates as we embark on this exciting adventure of empowerment and transformation.