GIVING BACK TO THE COMMUNITY
Every summer Foothills Creamery partners with a local charity and donates $3 from every pail sold of our new flavours. This year Foothills Creamery is proud to partner with Boys & Girls Clubs of Calgary. Alyson Xotta is the Development Officer of Community Relations at Boys & Girls Clubs of Calgary. She says although Boys & Girls Clubs of Calgary help combat a number of community issues, overall they are seeking to support the community in as many ways as they can. “We want to make sure every child and youth is getting the same start in life that other kids do that may not be in a vulnerable situation or not be able to afford the other programs that some place offer,” Xotta says. Boys & Girls Clubs of Calgary offer many variations of programs for kids and youth in need.
Boys & Girls Clubs have been around since 1939 and they will be celebrating their 80th birthday next year. The Boys & Girls Clubs of Calgary is a separately run organization from other Boys & Girls Clubs. “We have our own CEO so he can make his own decisions in our city. We do have some national support but we definitely run as a separate entity,” says Xotta.
Boys & Girls Clubs fund two separate pre schools in Calgary called Ready Set Go. As well, there are eight community clubs in basically every quadrant of the city. Xotta says these programs put a strong focus on social and emotional learning. “We try to get the kids outside and away from the screen. In all of the pre schools we have early development coaches willing to work with them and they are able to take one kid aside and determine if they need extra help. We try to do this even before they hit kindergarten because those classes are so big in the city,” Xotta says.
There are also plenty of opportunities for the kids to attend summer camps through Boys & Girls Clubs of Calgary. These camps consist of after school programs and also full day camps throughout the summer months. “It’s definitely amazing what the kids get to do in these after school programs. They really focus on leadership building and empowerment to help build strong self images,” says Xotta. Eliminating screen time is a major objective for Boys & Girls Clubs of Calgary. With the spike in digital technology and influence of social media and the internet it’s easy for kids to become disconnected. Boys & Girls Clubs of Calgary try their best to encourage face to face communication that helps teach the kids about the importance of social communication.
“Of course, any and all donations to Boys & Girls Clubs of Calgary goes straight back into the program. Anything from buying new soccer balls, organizing field trips, or giving the kids the freedom to organize their own craft activities, really making sure they are having a good time and learning throughout the process,” says Xotta. Boys and Girls Clubs of Calgary are beyond grateful to all the donors who help keep their program afloat. “It’s amazing what the community has done for us. Especially you guys, to just reach out to us. With the economic reality you never know what’s happening. It’s really nice to see some companies coming though and building relationships,” says Xotta. Foothills Creamery will be taking donations all summer on behalf of Boys & Girls Clubs of Calgary. Look for us at Taste of Calgary Aug. 9-12!