At the Grants Pass Boys and Girls Club we work to instill a sense of belonging, usefulness, influence, and competence in the youth we serve. One of the ways we do that is through Torch Club. Whether they are raking leaves, reading stories to children, or selling popcorn, the teens involved in Torch Club have the opportunity to develop leadership and service skills both to their fellow club members and the community.
Every Thursday Torch Club members read and act out a story to the younger kids at the Club. They read a story that they spent the Wednesday before writing and preparing. They have also performed stories like “Jack and the Beanstalk,” “The Ugly Duckling,” and other well-known classics. It is a great opportunity for the teens to further their skills as writers and thespians. And as it is with any activity centered around laughter and creativity, there is plenty of fun to be had.
The Torch Club is also involved with the community. They have spent time at different parks cleaning up trash, putting up decorations at Riverside Park at Christmas time, as well as raking leaves at the Faith House. Doing these things, the teens learn the value of hard work as well as the humility it takes to serve others.
As a Torch Club member, there are also opportunities to go on educational field trips. They have toured colleges to explore academic options. They have also toured a local fire station to research future job prospects.
Every Friday Torch Club sells popcorn, soda, and candy to the kids at the club. The kids can purchase items with money or club bucks. Club bucks is a reward system implemented by the club to encourage positive behavior. The kids earn club bucks by helping out around the club, being model club members, and going to Power Hour. They can spend these club bucks at the Club Grub put on by Torch Club members each Friday. This gives the teens running Club Grub a chance to learn the value of money as well as profit after sales.
Currently there are 10 teens involved in our Torch Club. They meet weekly to discuss current happenings. To be in the Torch Club, you must be committed to the weekly meetings, model good behavior, and display an interest in service and leadership. There is a President, Vice-President, and Treasurer who lead the Torch Club.
The Torch Club summer plans are to have car washes, yard sales, run a booth at Concerts in the Park and go on more educational field trips. Watch the website for pictures from these events.