12/06/09 — Pancakes raise money for Boys & Girls Club

View Archive

Pancakes raise money for Boys & Girls Club

By Catharin Shepard
Published in News on December 6, 2009 1:50 AM

The Boys & Girls Club of Wayne County held its annual pancake breakfast Saturday to raise money for the club's youth program operations.

For just $5, hungry patrons could support the club and have all the hand-cooked pancakes and sausage they could eat.

Boys and Girls Club Board President Richard Slozak has been slinging pancake batter for the club's annual breakfast fundraiser for more than a decade, and this year wasn't any different as he manned one of the big grills in the club kitchen. But the fundraiser was especially important this year, he said.

"When the economy's bad, we have even more people who need our services," Slozak said.

The club offers sports programs, but also many other activities and services for local children and teens, he said.

The money raised from the pancake breakfast will go toward funding the Keystone Club for teenagers, the Passport to Manhood program for young men, the Smart Moves program, the Power Hour homework and study group as well as the sports, arts and job ready programs that the club provides for youth.

The club has been conducting the annual fundraiser for more than 30 years, Slozak said. The group usually serves between 2,000 and 2,500 people, taking in an average of $10,000-$12,000. The club hoped to raise the same amount of money this year. It is the club's chief moneymaker.

The drizzling rain and cold weather didn't seem to affect the turnout, club supporter Elaine Henson said.

"So far, so good. It's been steady. I was a little concerned with the weather," she said.

Jim and June Scott were among the dozens of people arriving to pick up their pancakes. They always attend the breakfast to support the Boys and Girls Club fundraiser, Scott said.

"We appreciate what this fundraiser goes for," he said.

"We enjoy the pancakes, the fellowship with other people," Mrs. Scott said.

And Scott even purchases tickets to the event on behalf of his company's employees, Ms. Henson said.

The club accepts donations year-round, and Slozak extended an invitation for people interested in the Boys and Girls Club to drop by for a visit to see the facility.

"We would just like people to come by and see what we're doing," he said.

All proceeds from the breakfast will go toward helping the club serve its 1,134 members in Wayne County.

On average, 95 percent of active teen members of the club graduate from high school, 86 percent of active club members achieve grade level or above and more than 60 percent of teenage Boys and Girls Club members are employed, according to information from the club. There has also been only one teen pregnancy among all the active teen members in the club in 12 years.

The Boys and Girls Club provides a strong positive influence in the lives of young people, and works to give children and teens safe alternatives to being on the street, Slozak said.

"It's a great place for kids to come to be supervised and to be gainfully involved in things. Here, they get good supervision and people who care about them," he said.