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Meeting crucial for youth club

An organization that promotes wholesome youth activities and strong community involvement will soon be a part of the Camellia City.

A meeting led by Cedric Williams, director of the Boys and Girls Club of South Central Alabama, is slated for 6:30 p.m. on Thursday at the Butler County Courthouse.

Williams knows the positive difference such an organization can make in a child’s life.

&uot;From the age of five, I grew up attending the Boys and Girls Club in Montgomery,&uot; he said. &uot;I knew from a young age I wanted to, one day, be a director.&uot;

Williams took over the Montgomery area directorship in 2000. There are currently four sites with two additional sites coming to Montgomery and a third opening in Greenville.

More than 3.5 million children across the U.S. are served by the organization.

Williams said there are variety of programs available through the Boys and Girls Club.

&uot;We offer educational and tutorial programs and programs on drug, gang and teen pregnancy prevention,&uot; he said.

&uot;One of our biggest hits is our Career Prep program where we offer instruction in resume writing, going on job interviews and other skills young people need to know to get a job.&uot;

Recreation and sports activities also are offered &uot;as a hook to get the kids involved in our other programs,&uot; Williams said.

The organization director stressed the importance from the word &uot;go&uot; of community involvement in the new club.

&uot;We want people to come out and let us know what types of programs this community needs…is it cultural enrichment with theater, music and art?&uot; Williams said. &uot;Is it education or drug prevention? We need the folks who have lived here all their lives to have a say-so in this process. Then we can tailor the program to your community. We strongly encourage local citizens to attend this meeting.&uot;

&uot;We don’t just come in and set up shop,&uot; he said. &uot;We need the community to come together and tell us what it wants. This is the communities' club.&uot;

For more information, contact Cedric Williams with the Boys and Girls Clubs of South Central Alabama at (334) 265-2469.