COVINGTON, Ga. - Newton County is now part of the Club. The Boys & Girls Club, that is.
Monday marked the first day of summer camp in the new Newton County Boys & Girls Club facility on Brown Bridge Road. This day came after years of fundraising and community support to create a teen-focused center on the west side of the county.
"This is history in the making because our teens deserve a positive place to come and that place starts right here," Bob Mackey, president and CEO of Boys & Girls Club of North Central Georgia, said.
Full of educational and entertainment resources for teens, the new club launched its first day of summer camp Monday. Mackey said the idea of a local B&G Club started more than 10 years ago.
"I remember when it looked nothing like this," District 2 Commissioner Demond Mason said. "There was no deck, the floors were torn up, the walls were not painted. I am excited to see this place and I believe that it is going to be a very very positive thing when it comes to our youth and our teens. I am excited about what they've done here at the Boys & Girls Club and I'm just glad to be a part of it."
In a special grand opening ceremony Monday evening, Mackey and the B&G Club board honored all of the founding supporters of the club, which includes local businesses, families and civic organizations.
"Thank you for the board leadership, thank you for the county leadership that is making a difference in the lives of kids," Lisa Hurst, vice president of organizational development in the B& G Club Southeast Field Operations, said. "We know that if a young person attends a Boys & Girls Club 104 days a year, not only are they more than twice as likely to graduate from high school, but they're 2.5 times as likely to go on to post-secondary education. That is compared to other young people that don't have those opportunities."
The Newton County Boys & Girls Club, located at 13634 Brown Bridge Road, Covington, is now open to provide a safe and positive place for youth in eighth to 12th grade. Programs will focus on academic success, character, leadership development and healthy lifestyles. For more information about the club, visit https://www.bgcncg.com/newtoncounty.