New entrance to improve security at Boys and Girls Clubs | NevadaAppeal.com

New entrance to improve security at Boys and Girls Clubs

The Boys and Girls Clubs of Western Nevada is looking to increase the safety of their kids with some new construction.

The clubs will begin construction on a new front desk area, that once completed will create an additional barrier between the public and the children to better control who's inside the Boys and Girls Clubs.

"I am just ecstatic, it is something I have been wanting to work on for two years," said director Katie Leao. "It was actually the first thing I noticed the first time I walked in here for my job interview. We are pretty exposed and coming from the school systems I saw the importance in protecting our kids while also providing a welcoming entry for parents and kids.

"The biggest thing for us is that safety of our kids, not only emotional safety but physical as well so that division between the community and kids is important."

“It is just another feature to keep our kids safe and it helps us keep an eye on what is going on outside our building when we aren’t around.”

— Katie LeaoDirector

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The Boys and Girls Clubs were supposed to hold a ground breaking ceremony Thursday morning, but because of the weather had to move it inside. However, the clubs were still electrified with excitement over the start of the project.

"We are excited for the changes, when I first started we had about 263 kids and today we have 425 to 450 kids coming through daily so that there tells us the community is starting to believe in us and our mission for their kids and this allows us to provide a safer place to do that," Leao said.

The project is funded by community support as well as grants. The clubs received $50,000 from Lowe's as their national and local partner, then raised the rest of the $50,000 through community donations and fundraisers. The Carson City Lowe's employees will be volunteering their time to paint and set up the new area, and Leao said this project marks the beginning of a new partnership with the store.

"We want to grow this partnership," Leao said. "They have to give back to their community and we are excited to add this partnership locally."

Miles Construction is also partnering with the Boys and Girls Clubs to help with the construction of the new area.

"It is exciting," Bill Miles said. "We are living in a different world and the security of our children is extremely important so we can't wait for this project."

The construction is expected to take about two months and the clubs will have a grand unveiling in mid-January. For now, patrons of the clubs will have to use the back entrance, but the city and school district are also working with the clubs to help with pick up and drop off at the clubs' new entrance.

In addition to the new area, the Boys and Girls Clubs received a second grant to install security cameras inside and outside the building.

"It is just another feature to keep our kids safe and it helps us keep an eye on what is going on outside our building when we aren't around," Leao said.