May 14, 2020
Dear Community:

Thank you for your patience with our organization as we have continued to prepare for reopening our Clubs in Chatham, Lee, and Harnett Counties for our 2020 Summer Program. Our commitment to keeping young people safe is always our number one priority.

Very early on, our team explored the idea of our Clubs in all three counties serving as childcare centers for essential workers and first responders. Based upon the surveys we sent to the community, however, that service was not yet in demand in our service region. Through those surveys, we learned that many parents were at home with their kids and didn't have an emergent need for the Clubs to open for food service or for regular programs. As we begin to move forward through the multi-phase system that has been laid out by Governor Cooper's team, we are receiving much more inbound inquiry from the community about our availability for the summer as folks are going back to work, increasing their hours of work, or are preparing to go back to work.

Last month, my leadership team and I crafted and presented three operation scenarios for the summer: full capacity, half
capacity, and suspended operations. The Corporate Board of Directors approved all three scenarios and asked that I lead
the organization in the needed direction based upon the current environment and needs in the community. We continue to
spend a considerable amount of time consulting and communicating with our risk management partners at First Bank Insurance Services and the Redwoods Group, the NC Department of Health and Human Services, local departments of health and more as we explore our options and provision ways to operate in a manner that will be lawful and safe to Club members, staff, and public health.
In addition to the inbound inquiries received from Club parents, our concerns about food insecurity, academic learning loss, and general child safety (especially while parents are at work) are driving us to explore ways to be available for our community. To that end, we are making plans to open our doors to kids in Lee County and Chatham County on June 8 for the nine weeks of summer.
Here are some key points about our operations:

● We will operate our Clubs at approximately 50% enrollment (at least initially)
● Staff will report for training during the week of May 18 and the week of June 1 for training related to summer programs, COVID-19 protocols, childhood trauma, and more.
● The daily health screening we’re prepared to implement is comprehensive and CDC-influenced. We will read the temperatures of our staff and Club members multiple times per day, prohibit unnecessary entry by visitors and parents, and much more. Without question, this is the most stringent operational protocol we’ve ever used.
● We've confirmed with our vendors that our supply of hospital-grade cleaners, paper products, hand sanitizer, gloves, masks and more will be in plentiful supply for our Clubs.
● We will provide two meals per day as a USDA Summer Food Service Provider at all three Clubs.

Our Robin Paige Boys & Girls Club in Lillington is housed in the Shawtown Community Development Center, which is a Harnett County government-owned property and it is a shared space. Under normal circumstances, this arrangement works wonderfully, but it presents significant challenges during this pandemic. The building is occupied by multiple tenants, which makes it impossible for our staff to control the flow of traffic in and out of the building. This is especially important during a pandemic as we are required to carry out heightened disinfection procedures and control access to the building in an effort to keep kids and staff safe from viral infection. Furthermore, in the interest of public health, Harnett County Government has closed all government facilities until further notice. Unfortunately, these challenges prevent our organization from operating a summer camp at the Robin Paige Club at this time. However, our staff will continue to serve breakfast and lunch at the Robin Paige Club Monday through Friday for the foreseeable future. Our intentions are to continue serving meals all summer long at each site. Together, with our fellow nonprofit partners in the community, we will do our very best to make sure no child goes hungry this summer.

These plans are contingent upon our state's continued mitigation of the virus as reported by the NC DHHS and Governor Cooper and we reserve the right at any time to make any changes to our plans and operations, including closure. Announcements regarding our 2020-2021 after-school program will come at a later time. We are monitoring the state of public health very closely and we will continue to work with local government and school officials to devise an operation plan that is safe and serves as many children as possible. We ask for your continued patience and understanding as we navigate these unprecedented times.

Thank you, again, to our public leaders for the care and leadership you’ve shown through this time. And to our fellow nonprofit and government partners, especially our local food banks and school systems, thank you for continuing to do ALL you can to make sure basic needs are met and that our kids can finish the school year strong.

Last, but certainly not least, many thanks to all who have supported us, our local food banks, and all human services agencies through the pandemic. Your support has allowed all of us to continue serving through this crisis and to continue pressing onward toward recovery.

With gratitude,
Daniel K. Simmons, M.S., SHRM-CP
Chief Executive Officer
Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Carolina

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