WOODBRIDGE, Va. (WDVM) — The Boys and Girls Club of America is a national organization of local chapters that provide programs, experiences and a safe environment for kids.
“We really just want to give them the tools to help them to develop into great leaders,” said Darius Michael, local program director in Woodbridge.
Over 100 kids of all ages attend the Hylton Boys and Girls Club. Micheal said out of the many programs offered there, one specific program has left an impact on young ladies of color, and that program is called “Smart Girls.”
“Our Smart Girls program here allow our girls to come together, learn how to communicate, and talk about their differences” said Micheal.
Smart Girls is run by a group of women from an organization called Zeta Phi Beta. Michael said they have been volunteering to help mentor girls ages 8 to 18. One member said she’s learned “hygiene and how to settle drama with other girls and people and how to keep ourselves in order” said Laiana Barbour, a Boys & Girls Club student.
According to officials some of the things the girls learn and do are: “They will write the rules for Smart Girls and the rules for Smart Girls. They are made up by the girls that way if they break the rules themselves they can only blame themselves. So they have to be respectful, they have to be kind to everyone in the club they cant be mean to anybody inside the group, they have to be honest at all times and they’re responsible for their actions and they will respect other people’s opinion,” said Micheal.