Letting kids in, keeping COVID-19 out: Boys and Girls Clubs of VA Peninsula serving kids with safety in mind


(WAVY) — It’s been 10 days since six Boys and Girls Clubs of the Virginia Peninsula reopened to local kids and teens. With strict safety policies in place, like no visitors, staff says it’s going well.

Class is in session at the Boys and Girls Clubs of the Virginia Peninsula.

On the first day of school, staff launched the “club academy” program, welcoming in some local kids and teens.

“For the two weeks that we’ve been open, every staff member and every child has entered the buildings COVID symptom-free and have left symptom-free,” said Hal Smith, president and CEO of the Boys and Girls Clubs of the Virginia Peninsula.

Smith says it starts with temperature checks outside, which also continue throughout the day. Inside, kids are broken up into groups, tables are spaced out, shared items are no longer shared, and each facility is professionally cleaned nightly.

“At the end of each day, we have a crew that comes in, a company that comes in and sanitizing all of the buildings to prepare things for the next day,” said Smith.

He says the six open club locations have collectively served between 200 to 300 kids and teens daily.

“When you look at COVD-19 and you look at the effects that it’s had on everyday life and business and personal life, kids are very resilient and they’re very willing and able to adapt to change,” said Smith. “We as adults can certainly learn a lot from them.”

The facilities have WiFi and staff on hand to make sure kids get their school work done. Smith said they did purchase some new equipment like WiFi extenders and extra desks.

Smith says even as schools make changes, they will be there to help.

“We’re committed to adjusting our programs based on, you know, how the schools reopen and what the need in the community is,” said Smith.

You can learn more about the Boys and Girls Clubs of the Virginia Peninsula on the website.

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