Our History | Boys & Girls Clubs of Kennebec Valley
The Boys & Girls Clubs of Kennebec Valley (BGCKV) began as a Gardiner-based childcare program in 1996. By 1999, leaders began exploring a national model for expansion and chose the Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA) as their model.
In 2006 leaders acquired the former elementary school on Pray Street and surrounding land. That same year the program received a BGCA Charter and became the first Club to be chartered in Maine in 80 years as the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Gardiner. In June of 2017, in recognition of its expanding boundaries and vision, the Club changed its name to the Boys & Girls Clubs of Kennebec Valley (see News & Events on the Home page for more details).
The Club has thus grown from its origin as a licensed childcare center with six kids in 1996 to a Club:
•serving approximately 1,200 members annually from six weeks old to seniors in high school.
•owning a 24,000-square-foot building and land.
•engaging seven towns as partners.
•opening a satellite Club in Chelsea serving school age children.
•running age-appropriate programs so that children of all ages have a safe, positive environment, interactive fun, supportive relationships, life skills opportunities, high expectations, and continual recognition.
•promoting healthy lives and activities with nutritious meals, play, and organized sports.
•serving nearly 65,000 meals each year.
•fostering a senior citizens program with staff support.
•becoming the bustling site for many community meetings, programs, adult classes, and activities in the evenings and on weekends.
BGCKV’s work with middle school and high school kids has been recognized with state and national awards. In the last thirteen years, four of its teens have been chosen the Maine Youth of the Year.