Dan Rees of the Boys and Girls Club of Ottawa

Longtime manager reflects on why the Don McGahan Clubhouse at 430 McArthur Ave. is unlike any other after-school program in the city:

“I love seeing kids who have grown up – some aren’t even young adults anymore  – (and) are starting young families themselves. Now they come in and are registering their children. That’s how long I have been here. And what distinguishes us from others is that we grow with the families. The kids that grew up with the club want to give back, and it’s so effective because they have lived the program. And when I think specifically of the Don McGahan Clubhouse, we have some amazing partnerships and I think that’s what gets me excited to do this work. When we work with an individual, or organization, or group – it allows us to be barrier-free – there are no fees. Twice Upon a Time, this program we have is all about book ownership, they have partnered to try and get kids reading. They come in throughout the school year, and they will give out thousands of books. Eat More Soup – we really are thankful for that one – they have a chef who comes with a couple of interns who teaches skills to the children.

I am hoping that people see that there is a huge need and we have a lot of children coming to our programs. We are always looking for partnership opportunities.  I just see the good that this organization does. And it’s easy to get behind that.”

– Dan Rees, senior south/east manager, Boys and Girls Club of Ottawa