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Boys and Girls Club now at UTTC
March 1, 2016

By Alicia Hegland-Thorpe, United Tribes News

           The Three Affiliated Boys and Girls Club has added United Tribes Technical College to its locations in the Bismarck-Mandan area. The organization that serves Native youth on the M-H-A Nation and in the Capitol City area has worked-out an agreement for a satellite location on the UTTC campus.

            “It’s been a work in progress,” says Shannon Nash, branch manager of the TAT Boys and Girls Club, about plans to open a location at the tribal college in Bismarck. “It’s nice to see that it’s all finally coming together. It’s a nice fit.”

           At the first event on the campus in early January, over 40 people turned-out for Teen and Family night. Nash says the norm is about 20 to 25. Since then, attendance has grown to 45 - 50 kids.

Developing Youth Potential
           The TAT Boys and Girls Club serves the growing number of Native children in the area. The mission is to inspire, guide and empower youth to reach their full potential as productive, responsible and caring community members. Services are provided for all children in the community, Native or non-Native, ages 5 to 18.

           The program’s core components are: Character and Leadership Development, Education and Career Development, Health and Life Skills, Arts, Sports, Fitness and Recreation. Special initiatives include learning about Native culture, diabetes prevention, and other prevention programs such as tobacco, suicide and substance abuse. Youth employment and mentoring are also offered.

           The club meets Monday through Friday from 3 to 6 p.m. They also offer “Teen and Family Nights” and other special events.

Space to Meet
           The biggest challenge has been to find a permanent meeting place on the UTTC campus, according to Nash. Until recently, youngsters were assembling in the Healing Room of the Lewis Goodhouse Wellness Center, and the multi-purpose room and gym.

           Now, they’re making a transition to the lower level of Sitting Bull Hall with the idea of finding more space as the program grows.

           Nash says she hopes the move to UTTC is permanent. The club’s Mandan, ND location will remain open for special events.

The Three Affiliated Boys and Girls Club now meets at UTTC.
United Tribes News photo Alicia Hegland-Thorpe

           Three Affiliated Boys and Girls Club invites volunteers and mentors to apply. The application form is on the website, www.bcgtat.com. Background check is conducted.
           More information: Shannon Nash, Three Affiliated Tribes Boys and Girls Club, 701-421-0567, and check-out Facebook www.facebook.com/boysandgirlsclubmandan.

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