The Boys Club of Allentown was founded in 1937 and was located on Ridge Avenue.
Effective July 1, 2002 the Girls’ Club of Allentown merged with the Boys Club of Allentown. With compatible missions, the Board of Directors of both organizations believed that a merger would provide many exciting opportunities for at-risk youth. The combined resources over time have benefited all youth in our community. The original Girls’ Club site at 13th and Turner Streets remained a girls-only facility until 2014.
Prior to merger, the United Way of the Greater Lehigh Valley approached the former Girls’ Club of Allentown on March 17, 1999 about ways that this agency could improve programs for girls in the Bethlehem area. The Girls’ Club of Allentown’s Board of Directors agreed to expand the programs that they operated in Allentown to the Bethlehem area. Collaboration between the Girls’ Club of Allentown and the Boys and Girls Club of Bethlehem continue from 1999-2002.
As the newly formed Boys & Girls Club of Allentown (BGCA) found its program niche, the youth living in the city of Allentown benefited greatly from the experienced staff and leadership. Today, the Boys & Girls Club of Allentown serves approximately 2,000 kids from inner-city Allentown. Our mission is to enable all young people, especially those who need us most, to reach their full potential as productive, caring, responsible citizens.
The issues that our youth and their families face remain unchanged. They still need access to a safe environment that offers educational and fun activities.
The Boys & Girls Club is more than a place, it is a “movement” to enable all young people, especially those who need us most, to reach their full potential as productive, caring, responsible citizens.
By reaching children at an early age and providing safe, positive activities and encouragement, our Club provides a compelling alternative to youth crime, gang membership, drugs, and other negative influences that effect our youth today.
Our Club is a safe and stable place that ensures the physical and emotional safety of young people by promoting their development and instilling a sense of competence, usefulness, influence and belonging. When this strategy is fully implemented, self-esteem is enhanced and an environment is created which helps our members achieve their full potential. Additionally, our members learn to:
* Enjoy their interests
* Nurture their talents
* Dissolve their prejudices
* Express their personality
* Develop friendships
* Build self esteem
* Contribute to society
* Achieve personal success