Today’s youth face overwhelming obstacles that affect their health and well-being. The Boys & Girls Club of Watertown gives youth the tools—and the strength—to engage in positive behaviors and good decision-making. Programs focus on building self-esteem and deal with drug and violence prevention, fitness, wellness, and disease prevention. It is our goal to have youth practice healthy habits. In this area, we strive to develop young people’s capacity to engage in positive behavior that nurture their own well-being, set personal goals and live successfully as self-sufficient adults.
Behavioral Health Services
Individual and family counseling services are offered at the Club. These services are provided by our Licensed Professional Counselor, Linda Schoepp, M.Ed., NCC, LPC. Minimal fees are based on income and/or child membership status. Referrals are accepted from parents, family members, teachers, school counselors, pastors, court services and other agencies and concerned individuals. Linda hosted 670 counseling sessions over the course of 2015.
The SMART Moves (Skills Mastery and Resistance Training) prevention/education program addresses problems such as drug and alcohol use and premature sexual activity.
This program is a product of years of research compiled by Boys Town, Nebraska. The curriculum is a series of classes which provide step-by-step guidance for raising responsible children and building strong, happy families. Parents are referred to the Club by Social Services, the School District or law enforcement.
In March, the Club participates in this national day of activism that empowers youth to stand out, speak up and seize control against Big Tobacco. On Kick Butts Day, Club members and health advocates organize an event in our Games Room to raise awareness about tobacco use in our community, encourage youth to reject the Tobacco Industry’s deceptive marketing and stay tobacco-free. We partner with the Watertown Tobacco Free Coalition in executing this event.
A comprehensive, hands-on curriculum that is developed to teach the harmful effects of tobacco use, this program provides education about peer pressure, and focuses on reducing the number of kids who begin to use tobacco products. Over 110 Club members participated in the C.A.T. program in 2015.
As a member of this program, our organization receives resources to offer nutritious meals and snacks to children each day, provided that the meal meets established nutrition standards. Across all our program areas, we served over 98,000 meals and snacks for 2015. In June of 2016, at our Main Site alone, we served over 12,000 meals and snacks.
Each year, the Club hosts a community health fair with an interactive format, where kids get to learn about nutrition, exercise, and positive health behaviors. Numerous health and wellness agencies from the Watertown community serve as partners to provide education, resources and health awareness in a fun format. Typically, in April of each year, all Club kids and their parents are invited to attend this event held in our Club gymnasium. This past April we had over 20 vendors participate in the health fair from organizations such as Prairie Lakes Healthcare System, Watertown Police Department, the Community Recreation Center, and the Extension Services Dietitian.
Triple Play, a comprehensive health and wellness program, strives to improve the overall health of Club members ages 6-18 by increasing their daily physical activity, teaching them good nutrition and helping them develop healthy relationships.
The Triple Play Game Plan offers a holistic approach with three key areas of focus:
Mind: Develops a knowledge base for young people to acquire healthy habits, such as making smart food choices, understanding appropriate portion sizes and creating fun and balanced meals.
Body: Promotes young people becoming more physically active through fun daily fitness, including activities to get kids active and moving.
Soul: Strengthens interpersonal skills, positive behavior and good character through social recreation programs and activities.
Each day we challenge our youth members to participate in special Triple Play activities to earn points. Some of these activities include: Trivia Questions, Crossword Puzzles, Basketball, and Partner Painting. At the end of the school year, we tally the points and the top members are rewarded with a trip to see a Twins Game made possible through the Pat Towle Memorial Fund.