Boys and Girls Club of Mount Vernon Stays Connected with After School Kids During Crisis

Contact: Mel Campos

Chief Professional Officer

Boys & Girls Club of Mount Vernon

Tel 914 668-9580


Mount Vernon, New York, April 28, 2020 – Boys and Girls Club of Mount Vernon Stays Connected with After School Kids During Crisis

The Boys & Girls Club of Mount Vernon continues to provide support for their community and resources to help area youth remain engaged in their education and after school activities during the ongoing COVID-19 crisis.

The Mount Vernon community has been particularly hard hit by the virus, as many residents have lost jobs and otherwise struggled with the challenges of isolation, and their children have few alternatives to keep themselves involved, educated, and active. In response to the stress and increasing impact on their education and well-being, the Boys & Girls Club of Mount Vernon and members of their Board have responded in a variety of ways to support efforts to keep them engaged and provide resources during the pandemic.

One of the challenges facing families is their ability access the technology needed to be engaged and continue their education, and Club Board members have contributed computers for kids who were unable to access the internet and school lesson plans. Through their involvement and support, area youth are able to access educational support coordinated by Club Director of Education Sharon Young along with staff and volunteers. BGCMVNY board members and Westchester neighbors in  Larchmont, Rye and Mamaroneck contributed to BGCMVNY effort to collect and distribute unused computers to help support remote learning and work, and Jonathan Gould of Lighthouse Main Street Solutions/Computer SuperCenter of Greenwich helped sanitize these devices to help prepare them for their use.

“On March 23rd we launched our virtual Club with 8 Club Members joining us online, and the kids were extremely happy to see the staff and their friends” said Mel Campus, Chief Professional Officer, Boys & Girls Club of Mount Vernon. “We quickly realized that many of our families did not have the technology necessary to participate, and were very pleased to see that our Board Members Fred Powers and the Lavan family purchased refurbished computers with help from fellow Board Members Lisa Giuffra Diaz and Bonnie Rudin so we could lend them to the kids. As of today, we are proud to report that we have provided laptops to kids who needed them, and Club Members have logged on and become engaged. We couldn’t be prouder of our Board and staff for stepping up during this time of need, it is the true spirit of the Boys & Girls Club in action. We would be happy to coordinate with anyone who would offer more of these generous donations to help our members. ”

Club Board member Dr. Michele Maidenberg has offered a series of guided mediations that are also available on the Club website at, and “Boredom Buster” kits were made for Club members to use at home to draw, write poetry and be creative, Origami papers and materials were made available with suggested tutorials to make hearts and roses, and decoupage boxes. These materials were made possible by contributions from area merchants, including Larchmont Village Paint, Bob and Bonnie Cotnoir, Silvermine School of Art, and Dominic’s Fine Cigars for donating boxes, and additional materials were anonymously donated including puzzles, knitting and LEGO kits.

The Club also provided nonperishable foods to the Mount Vernon community including food with the art kits. Said Lavan “It was great to see kids happy to be near the Club, and the parents were very appreciative of the Club’s efforts. Our BGCMVNY members and families continue to be in the  thoughts of our staff and Board of Directors, and we look forward to gathering again in our vibrant Club.”

Added Campos, “ This has been a very challenging time not being able to serve kids as we would like but we are finding ways to keep our kids engaged. I am proud of our Board, staff, and our entire Club Community for pulling together and doing all we can to keep BGCMV engaged and relevant. I thank them all from the bottom of my heart for pulling together during these very difficult times. A special thanks goes to Fred Schwam and Rob Kestenbaum from our Board, as they have led us during this crisis with guidance from Rob Potack on financial matters. We thank them all for their leadership and guidance.”

About Boys & Girls Club of Mount Vernon

The Boys & Girls Club of Mount Vernon offers after school, teen, and summer programs for over 700 youth in the Mount Vernon community, and serves over 1,400 through a variety of other programs to help them learn and grow in a safe, fun, educational environment. Every day, their dedicated, highly trained staff and volunteers serve youth members with a wide variety of engaging, interactive activities and programs, to help them improve their self- esteem, develop positive values, and achieve their highest potential in academic success. The mission of the Boys & Girls Club is to develop today’s youth into tomorrow’s leaders. For more information, contact Mel Campos, Chief Professional Officer tel: 914 668-9580