The Boys & Girls Clubs of Western Nevada’s annual luau raised 18 percent of the club’s annual operating budget for the year, the highest amount in the event’s 25-year history. BGCWN operates five sites in Carson City and the Carson Valley, serving more than 2,600 children, with an operating budget of $2 million.
Luau proceeds go toward unrestricted funds, which keep the lights on and the staff paid, said Katie Leao, chief professional officer for the club, which is no small feat as the Club has grown from 253 children in 1993 to the thousands of children the Club impacts today.
“Besides our Clubhouse kids, we serve an additional 4,900 kids through community outreach in the form of basketball clinics, Junior Giants baseball, soccer, golf and STEM academic programs,” Leao said. “Our Clubhouse kids receive help with homework, snacks and some meals along with education in healthy lifestyles, leadership and character in a safe, fun environment after school and during school breaks.”
Leao said numbers for the 2018-19 school year are still coming in, but last year about 86 percent of club kids were age 12 and under. Teens ages 13-18 made up the other 14 percent. More than 40 percent of the club’s population qualifies for free or reduced lunch and many club members live in single parent households.
“Our club members represent every demographic in Carson City and our impact is strong,” she said. “This year 75 percent of our teens reported they are on track for graduation, 84 percent have A’s and B’s and 45 percent volunteer monthly. Over 70 percent of our youth perceive school is very important.”
Leao said she and the club’s board of directors, led by Roxanne Spring, and the Carson Valley community council work to raise money all year long.
“We are so pleased with our communities for showing up to celebrate our 25th anniversary with us,” Leao said. “We saw many of our old friends at the Luau, and many, many new faces as well. Our thanks go to all of our guests, and our volunteers, staff and event committee members. We couldn’t do it without all of you.”
This year’s list of sponsors and major donors to the luau include Bodine’s Casino, Hometown Health, Renown, Rise, Baker Hughes a GE Company, Capital Glass, The Fox Brewpub, Dutch Bros. Coffee, Lumos & Associates, Miles Construction, Sierra Nevada Media Group, Universal Services Recycling, Allison MacKenzie, Beglin Orthodontics, Carson Valley Accounting, City National Bank, Gold Dust West, McDonald’s, Tahoe Supply, VT Accounting and Associates, Alsco, Boys & Girls Clubs of Truckee Meadows, Carson City BBQ, Capital Beverages, Harcourts NV1 Real Estate, Jimmy John’s, Model Dairy, Monticello Vineyards Napa Valley, Paul Schat’s Bakery, Red’s Old 395 Grill, The Change Companies, The Tap Wagon and Western Nevada Supply.