Bentonville, Ark. (KNWA) – The Boys and Girls Club of Benton County is getting ready to celebrate a very special teenager.
Boys and Girls Club of Benton County alone has more than 3,800 members.
“We bridge the gap between school and home so we teach them community service, how to give back to the club, we teach them how to be a good friend, a good mentor and we just teach them to be their true selves,” Director of Programs Ashley Skaggs said.
That is 3,800 kids in our community that the club is helping grow into successful adults.
“This is a free space. They can come in. They have mentors. They have friends. They have activities. They have programs. They have a plethora of choices that they can make,” Director of Resource Development Stefanie Jackson said.
Now, one of those kids will be honored as the youth of the year.
“They fill out an application. They do three essays and then after those three essays, they have to get two letters of recommendation. Then they do an extensive interview process,” Skaggs said.
For the second year in a row, Shakira Haro will be recognized at the club’s annual gala.
“Shakira is one of a kind. She walks in. She brightens the room with her smile. She is very compassionate. She is the type that if she sees someone sitting by themselves or they have an off day she goes out of her way to talk to them, make them feel that they are important and valued,” Skaggs said.
She is just one of many special teens at The Boys and Girls Club of Benton County.
“It just astonishes me the accomplishments that these kids have already made at just 17-18-year-old. Some of these kids are even helping raise their families, their siblings are helping support their families as well. Having part-time jobs, being apart of the community, being apart of their school,” Jackson said.
The annual Youth of the Year Fundraising Gala is on April 9th. For more information, click here.