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Boys, Girls Club To Lose Summer Camp Funding

Club officials say annual fundraiser is in doubt.

Officials from the say they are scrambling to secure funding for their summer program after an annual fundraiser at Laurel Mall was canceled because of the impending redevelopment.

The club stands to lose $20,000 to $40,000 after plans to hold its annual carnival on the parking lot of Laurel Mall was scrapped, according to Levett Brown, the club’s president. Brown said he was told this spring by managers at the development that the carnival wouldn’t happen because of an

“We were told by the developer that we can’t do it,” he said. “It’s just been up and down as to when they are going to do the demolition.”

Calls to the developer for comment went unanswered as of late Monday.

Demolition on the mall's parking lot was to start last year but was put on hold until after the holiday. Plans eventually call for

The club has been holding the carnival at the mall, along Route 1, for the last 10 years. The club partners with a local carnival service and collects a percentage of the proceeds from ticket sales. The funds pay for the club’s summer camp and waiver program, which allows for lower program registration fees for low-income children.  Without it, Brown said the club will have to end the program.

“That’s a huge fundraiser for us,” he said. “Financially, it will be hard. We will definitely not have [the summer camp].”

Moving the carnival to another location in Laurel is unlikely, he said, because the Route 1 location was the most ideal for the carnival owner.

The fate of the carnival is the latest financial blow to the club, which has been struggling to keep its doors open in recent years. In November,  Brown and other officials at the club of the club, which is housed in the oldest standing building in the City of Laurel.

But Brown said that the board of the directors is still hoping to bolster revenues by renting space inside the building and securing grant funding from the state.

Peter Lewnes April 17, 2012 at 04:19 PM
No SURPRISE here with just another case of MIS-MANAGEMENT by a group of people who have NO business in running the Laurel Boys and Girls Club unless you mean" INTO THE GROUND". "Sorry", I do believe that we are already here! No funds due to a PERCENTAGE of monies coming from others doing the work for the club! I sure do remember the days where the members of the club held there own fundraisers and did the work themselves and went door to door looking for sponsors for there teams but that was when the members were TRUE residents of the City. The APATHY here sure doesn't surprise me at all! Once again, where have ALL the monies gone and just how much and who decides on the salaries of the so called "Board of Directors" pay?
Joshua Garner (Editor) April 17, 2012 at 04:40 PM
Interesting point Peter. Do you think the summer program should be saved?
tanisha April 17, 2012 at 07:06 PM
I'm sad for the kids and parents that depend on the summer camp. I'm not surprised that the club is in a financial hole. They seem to have a weak board of directors. So what's up with the so called "demolition" of the mall?? Here we are in mid- April and does anyone know what the schedule for demolition is or better yet has financing been secured?
Peter Lewnes April 17, 2012 at 08:53 PM
Listed are those who are to BLAME for the failures of the Laurel Boys and Girls Club! Board of Directors Levet Brown - (President) Harri Cox - (Assistant to President) Michael Sarich - (Vice President) Lori Rousseau - NIH(Treasurer) INTERESTING? Justin Johnson - (Financial Secretary) Ellen Eberhane - (Executive Director) Directors Chantel Myles -Testing and Educational Coordinator, Charter School, (PHD, Prince George’s County Teacher). Reverend Hebron (Faith Based Community Organizer). Adrian Rousseau - Mentoring Coordinator and Athletic Director Reverend Dr. Babatunde Adenuga - Computer Technology Coordinator, (Chairman Life Education Center). Danny Sanders - (Building Supervisor, Community Service Coordinator) Nan Tripp - President (Laurel Friendship Club) Peter O’ Reilly - (Historical Society/Building Committee) Bob Gaulin - (Chairman of Bingo) Where did this money go to - CarMax, who recently adopted the Laurel Boys and Girls Club donated nearly $30,000 dollars and CarMax employees additionally readied the club for the summer camp by volunteering in cleaning, painting, debris removal and yard work. Hey Levet, no camp? Giving the monies back to CarMax? Also, how about disclosing the salaries that you have decided to pay yourselves!
Peter Lewnes April 17, 2012 at 09:44 PM
Joshua, ANY program that involves children should be saved but NOT at the cost of the taxpayers. Registration fees, LBGC members going out & working fundraisers, car washes, mulch & yard sales, sponsors, etc for what they want & a Board of Directors with an OLD SCHOOL backbone to promote those values. So sad that we live in a generation of give me-give me & not wanting to work for it! I myself was a member of the NCBGC and if you wanted to be apart of it, then YOU worked for it. NO FREE RIDES! I have many friends along with my wife who were members of the LBGC and the ALL say the same thing, NOTHING EVER WAS JUST GIVEN TO US! The current Board of Directors are the ONLY ones who are to blame for the LBGC current situation and should ALL step down! All I am hearing is that THEY are trying to get monies or grants from everyone else and not doing ANYTHING themselves! What a wonderful example for today's youth & why we now live in a generation of children who haven't a clue! I've grown tired of the current Board of Directors putting the blame on the City, You, Me & EVERYONE else an not excepting it themselves! Who in there right mind would give ANYTHING to a DIS-FUNCTIONAL group of individuals who can show NOTHING for what the have already gotten and the ONLY ones who are crying about the mess that there in! I myself would be the first with a donation to a fundraiser or event but sure as HELL would wan't to know with PROOF of what I just helped pay for or purchased!
tanisha April 18, 2012 at 11:41 AM
I don't have children and I moved into this area as an adult so I'm not as familiar as some on this venue are with this group. I have followed the media stories positive and negative regarding the club. My personal opinion on this is - if the President and board of this group is so passionate about the club why doesn't the President step down and have elections to bring on someone that would not have the "baggage". I see they have some wonderful people are directors - I hope they take their fiduciary duty seriously. I would be more than willing to write a check but need to know that my money would be going to programs for children and/or equipment. In this economy with county and state govt facing budget woes themselves I don't feel monies should go to the club when you have more and more people that are homeless, a step away from homeless and some that can barely feed their kids. I agree with Mr. Lewnes that the board needs to step up and fundraise if they are not already doing so.
Lindsey April 19, 2012 at 04:13 PM
I think it's important to note that the Club did not offer a Summer Camp Program last year, despite having held the carnival fundraiser.
LBGC Volunteer April 19, 2012 at 04:51 PM
The club does fund raise. Every year we have a CARNIVAL twice a year that is our BIGGEST Fundraiser. One in the spring and another in the fall. Now because of the "so called" mall demolition we can't have that fundraiser. The city has been claiming to do something about our mall for way to long and conveniently they are now going to begin the demolition. I was told by one of the vendors in the mall that they had to be out by May. So why can't we have our fundraser in April! Sounds like the city is at it again. Anything to prevent the boys and girls club from making the money they need to do good things for our children. We have folks that work everyday for the club without recognition or PAY which includes the Board of Directors! I don't know where Peter is getting his information from but I can tell you it isn't from a reliable source or anyone who knows or works at that club. They put in many hours, VOLUNTEER HOURS, for the kids of our community. They do that because they care about our kids. ALL the kids of the community AND surrounding communities. It's just sad that there are folks like Peter who think that any child outside of Laurel doesn't belong. Any child outside of Laurel should even grace the steps of the Laurel Boys and Girls Club. That is what is wrong with the world today. People only think about themselves and not what they can do to help others. I guess they would rather see our children hanging on the corner instead of hanging at the club!
Dayel Dunston April 19, 2012 at 06:31 PM
It's obvious hat Mr. Lewes is very misinformed and for what ever reason is casting doubt based on inconclusive information or better yet misinformation. All monies that are collected or donated has been used to keep the Club afloat especially in light of the clty government refusing to be a viable part of it's mission. The Club serves the forgotten residents,( ie the ones that the city government feels did not vote for them) and surrounding communites with options to educate, mentor, and to supply a safe haven. I for one as a board member take offense to the insinuation that we get paid for our committment and dedication to the youth we come into contact with and take it as a defammation of chacter as well and that I intend to seek leagal advice as recousre to your acusations. Thanks for being so bold as to give your name. We twist a penny everyway we can to keep our doors open for those who want to participate in our programs. I organize meetings for the Attorny General of the United States, Eric Holder, and bring my insite to the board of what is going on Nationally with youth programs and grant opportunities. I also volunteer year round for what ever the club needs. I have yet to have ever made your aquantice at the club in any capacity. So my question again what is the source and validity of your information? It is obvious that you have a hidden agenda and is being the prpaganda voice for your puppet master Daryel Dunston, LBGC Volunteer and Board Member
Dayel Dunston April 19, 2012 at 06:40 PM
Hello Tanisa, Before passing judgement or taking someone's word that does not even patronize the club, maybe you should contact the club for a tour of our programs for yourself. I am very pleased with the effort of the Club to do what they can to stay open. I am originally from Philadelphia and has been an active volunteer for over ten years. In that ten years my children and countless more have benifitted from our efforts to be there for them regardless of finacial and political problems. Our one goal has been to serve the needs of youth from Laurel and surrounding areas. Daryel Dunston, LBGC Volunteer and Board member
Peter Lewnes April 19, 2012 at 10:23 PM
CarMax, who recently adopted the Laurel Boys and Girls Club donated nearly $30,000 dollars and CarMax employees additionally readied the club for the summer camp by volunteering in cleaning, painting, debris removal and yard work. Thanks CarMax!! Obtained from the LBGC website. If not holding the summer camp, what are you now going to use the monies for?
Peter Lewnes April 19, 2012 at 10:57 PM
Another who hides behind a screen name. The club has had more than enough time to look for an alternative location. When renovation starts and in progress, what will you do then? Who then, will be to blame?I did attend a carnival at the racetrack last year! I do even recall them being held over on Rt 197 in years past! As 4 YOUR staement about pay, are YOU saying that NO one is paid a salary and some or ALL work ALL day for FREE? The LBGC should be for the residents of Laurel only and that would keep the costs down and let the club operate within a budget. As 4 vouchers, I do not want my tax dollars paying for anyone who I am not allowed to claim as a dependent! If you dont have it, go with out it! It worked well when my parents were coming up as kids and made you appreciate the things that you did have a lil more! Its called, OLD SCHOOL! Why are we funding activities for others who have clubs in there own communities? Maybe a name change is needed! Finally, I see that 2 of your members associated with the club may be unknowingly jepoardizing the LBGC's tax exempt status by engaging in political activity (past & present). The IRS rules are very clear. There are also clear rules severely limiting political activity by organizations receiving state or federal grants.
Dayel Dunston April 20, 2012 at 02:08 AM
I refuse to believe that you are the voice of the Laurel community. It is obvious that you do not volunteer, donate, or use the facility at the LBGC. Why so much anger and animosity for something that is not even part of your life? You are someone on a soap box with nothing valid to say and the Laurel Patch has no choice but to print your misguided and misinformation for fear of being your next object of concern. Since it is your constitutional right to freedom of speech. regardless if it's intent has an ounce of truth. Daryel Dunston
Peter Lewnes April 20, 2012 at 09:26 AM
Once again, NO answers to the questions set forth! No anger towards the LBGC for clubs such as these can be a GREAT help to the youth as it was for myself growing up. The only problem here is that the current group should all step aside and give someone else a chance to run this organization and to NOT use the children of Laurel as a stepping stone for political gain! SHAME ON YOU ALL! Why so much anger and animosity for something that is not even part of your life? Laurel is a part of my LIFE for I live here and what bothers me most are the people who are destroying what was once a great club! As for your remark about "defammation of chacter" it is you and the board who has done such in your remarks towards MYSELF, the Mayor, City Council & the employees of the city who ALL do a damn good job EVERYDAY in making Laurel a great place to live! Enough said, for I am once again so tired in hearing that ALL the LBGC's problems are again the fault of EVERYONE in the community but not the BOD of the LBGC! So sad that you have gotten to a point where you now really believe what you are saying to be the TRUTH!
City Resident April 20, 2012 at 12:47 PM
Mission Statement: Our mission is to work in partnership with citizens of The Greater Laurel Area in providing quality recreational and enrichment programs for the purpose of improving the quality of life for our youth and their families. To accomplish our mission programs are designed to encourage, teach and instill our children the positive values of: Good Sportsmanship Fair Play Cooperation Vision: We will provide after school programs, which will include sports programs and enrichment programs. Provide unlimited programming for area youth. Core Values: Recognizing the dedication and skill of all members, we will create and maintain a safe and secure environment for our members. We are guided by: Service to our members and their families, Integrity, Honesty, Accountability, Professionalism, Compassion, Respect, and Safety. All members, staff or volunteer, of LBGC will continue their efforts to remove any obstacles that limit opportunities for members to participate due to discrimination, because
John S April 20, 2012 at 12:55 PM
Noted.
Laurel Baller April 21, 2012 at 06:00 PM
Petey Lewness: 1. Do you have kids? 2. Why do you love Moe so much when he's run our city into the ground? 3. Why do you hate a place that helps so many black kids?
Peter Lewnes April 22, 2012 at 12:32 PM
Your Screen Name says it all! Is there ANY intelligent conversation that could possibly come from the LBGC? Amazing when you put forth any TRUE questions to them, NO REPLY! 1. NO and if I did, they WOULD NOT be a member of a group like this! 2. WAKE UP - The election is over and the people have spoken. Mayor Moe has NOT run our city into the ground except in the MINDS of a few. If unable to figure it out, it's YOU and the LBGC! Once again, Mayor Moe, City Council, staff & employees, LPD, LVFD & Rescue Squad continue to provide EXCELLENT service to the community! Take a good look around the rest of the county! Drugs, Killings, Robbery, etc. Every city and community will have its share of problems, but Mayor Moe & Chief McLaughlin have done & will continue to do whatever it takes to make Laurel a great & safe place to live! 3. How dare YOU bring RACE into this forum! It was brought forth during the election by your so-called Mentoring Coordinator and Athletic Director - Adrian Rousseau & now agian by YOU! Tell me, why did YOU not mention white, hispanic, oriental, disability / hadicapped, etc. kids? TRUE RACISM! Better still, please don't bother for ANY answer would just bring further embarrassment (an emotional state of intense discomfort with oneself) to the LBGC! So sad that the LBGC BOD's have had to step to an ALL TIME low like this! Do the RIGHT thing and step aside to let others take on the challenge in making the LBGC a great club again!
John S April 23, 2012 at 11:16 AM
Mr. Dunston, I see in your 10:08 PM April 19, 2012 reply to Mr. Lewnes that your opinion is that he has "nothing valid to say". He references IRS in his 6:57 pm April 19, 2012 post. On October 6, 2011, a letter was sent to Mr. Rousseau's home from the Board of Elections Supervisors Chairperson John Kish. At the Candidates Forum on October 20, 2011 Mr. Rousseau made a public statement about Mr. Kish's letter, closing his remarks by saying something to the effect "I understand that this is not personal." I paraphrase here. On October 20, 2011, he also said, "I am not a politician". I felt like he was addressing what some call "racism" for remarks that went along the lines of "I hope and pray they do the right thing, not the white thing." Regarding the controversial remark, the historical context of the situation was a Council appointment that only occurred because of the extension of the 2008 terms by one year (until 2011 instead of 2010). From media accounts, I believe Ms Snyder didn't want the term extended because of personal commitments that led to her resigning by June 2011. This created a vacancy for a mere six month appointment. In 2009, Mr. Rousseau had filed a lawsuit on the referendum that approved the extension of the Council terms. We need a forum to discuss "race card". I feel there are too many "race games/decks" for it to be implied there is only one card to be designated "the" race card.
Not sure April 24, 2012 at 01:01 PM
My son's play flag football for the club now. They have played tackle one year in the past. I do believe that LBGC should be for Pg County Laurel residence only. And I have heard whispers of mishandling of monies. But I have to say to "Laurel Baller" there is no room for RACISM in this conversation. But I have to ask, why not hold the carnival at another venue?
Not sure April 24, 2012 at 08:32 PM
Laurel Native. Where do I even start???? Stop with the Racism card already. I have lived in laurel for 15 years. I have never been discriminated against once out here. So how do you go from "LAUREL IS A RACIST ASS TOWN" to "LETS ALL GET ALONG" Did you get out and vote? Don't lie to me to make your self feel better. The people got out and voted and Moe won. You are entitled to your own opinion. But all you did was point a finger at the Mayor. Are you any better then Lewnes? I don't need proof of mismanaged money from the football side of things. Maybe somebody cares to tell us what happen to the 2 or 3 previous commissioner's????? I am on nobody's side here.And there is another team in Laurel just not in the "City" that play on Rt 197 And another in west laurel. With the same price.With all that said I do not feel comfortable making donations are doing fund raisers, if I do not know where the money is going.
Antonio Washington April 25, 2012 at 02:14 PM
I'm curious why the summer camp would cost $20,000 to $40,000. What are the actual costs of the camp? If they have no paid employees there's no salaries to pay.
Suzanne Haversack April 25, 2012 at 02:23 PM
The Greater Laurel United Soccer Club offers British and Brazilian Soccer Camps at very reasonable prices. These camps are run by professional trainers and are a lot of fun! Sign up at www.glusc.com.
Antonio Washington April 25, 2012 at 03:11 PM
City of Laurel also has summer camps. $100 for City resdients and $130 for non city. How much does the LBGC camp cost? https://www.cityoflaurel.org/sites/default/files/u28/Spring%20Summer%20Brochure%20%202012%20WEB.pdf

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