Garrison Youth Services Team Wins National Award of Excellence | Item
BAUMHOLDER, Germany – A leading non-profit organization on Wednesday recognized the Baumholder Military Community Children and Youth Services Youth Program as the best in the military.
The Boys and Girls Club of America’s Military Services 2020-2021 Military Appreciation Ceremony, held online, was part of the tricennial celebration between the Uniformed Services and the club. BMC Youth Services received top honors for outstanding service.
“This award shows that our children and youth services continue to lead the military par excellence,” said Jae Kim, deputy director of the BMC garrison. “To have a BMC program recognized on such a big stage is an incredible honor. “
Jennifer Hodges, the CYS garrison coordinator, said she was not surprised by the latest accolades.
“We get a lot of awards because we’re the best,” Hodges said. “Even though the pandemic has occurred, you have a program that… still excels, is successful, meets the needs of families, meets the needs of children, and does so with excellence.”
Youth Program Director Ryan Flynn credits the excellence of the program to his team and strong partnerships with garrison leadership and the BGCA, especially during a pandemic.
“The hours after school are essential for young people to stay out of trouble and we want them to have a place to go,” said Flynn. “By working with the command team, we were able to stay open with rules, precautions, masks, social distancing in place. We fill this capacity daily. They like it here.
The partnership between the military and the BGCA dates back to 1991. According to President and CEO Jim Clark, the club is one of the largest groups serving military-related youth in and out of military installations. . He said at the ceremony that 214 military organizations operate more than 500 BGCA affiliated clubs that serve more than 526,000 military-related youth.
Flynn said he thinks BMC’s youth program stood out from the crowd because he and his team use all of the resources that come with being a BGCA affiliate club. These resources often include the BGCA’s partnerships with private sector companies. Flynn said, for example, that the UPS Road Code program is popular because unlike their friends in the United States, teens cannot get their driver’s licenses.
“This program is a great opportunity to fill this gap,” he said.
Through the program, potential drivers are able to prepare for their return to the United States to apply for their license. Plus, taking the course also lowers auto insurance rates, Flynn added.
Thanks to the work of its team and volunteers, the Baumholder Youth Center often hosts major regional events such as the Youth of the Year program and art exhibitions.
On the other hand, BMC’s youth programs teach teens to give back. The Keystone Club of Baumholder recently volunteered at the Fisher House Tree Lighting Ceremony and the BMC Teen Center transformed into a gift-wrapping center where they wrapped gifts for families in military in need.
“My team is full of dedicated youth development professionals who believe in the mission and come forward every day during a global pandemic,” said Flynn. “They continue to ensure that the youth at our center provide the best possible developmental experience for the youth. “
The Outstanding Service Award was not the only recognition for the BMC. The BGCA presented its first Military Family of the Year award to the Fejeran Family of BMC for, according to the BGCA, “improving the lives of others in the community through volunteerism that embodies the spirit of the army of selfless service and service excellence ”.