The Oakhaven Club is the newest addition to the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Memphis.
The Club was originally opened in 2012 to address the dire need for youth services in the Oakhaven community. The Oakhaven Elementary, Middle School, and High School Campus’ are all within a five mile radius. When the doors to the Oakhaven Club were first opened the neighborhood saw a reduction in juvenile crime by a staggering 32%.
For three years the Club was operated out of a small utility building until April of 2016 when the renovation of an 11,000 square foot gymnasium and programming space was officially opened. This expanded the current facility to include a gym, kitchen and cafeteria area, learning center, technology room, games room, and staff offices.
The renovation allowed the Club to serve 335 registered Club members in 2016 with an average daily attendance of over 90 youth ages 6-18.
Unfortunately, the renovation also brought along unexpected vandalism from other members of the community. Nightly break-ins began to occur to access the renovated basketball courts as well as theft and vandalism of the Club premises. As such it became apparent to the staff and board that a barrier to the Club, such as a gate, is needed during non-operational hours.
The Oakhaven Club sits on a large piece of property and the $43,000 project has been allocated to three phases:
1) Front sliding gate - $8k
2) Front and side of the property with extruded aluminum fencing- $20k
3) Back of property with 8' chain link and baseball field- $15k
We would like to request for your assistance in keeping the Oakhaven Club a safe and positive place for our members by making a donation in support of the Oakhaven Fence Project.
Lawrence ("Chris") came to the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Memphis years ago as a club member at the Goodwill unit. He joined the South Side unit as a part-time staff where he wore many hats including being the Job Ready Coordinator. He is a recent college graduate as a result of a University of Phoenix/Boys & Girls of America Scholarship for Boys & Girls Club members and staff. Now he serves as the Program Director at the Bernal E. Smith Sr. unit setting a great example for the members of what you can achieve when you set your mind to it.
Email: lawrencey [at] bgcm [dot] org
Kelly Thomas III was born and raised right here in Memphis, TN. He went to Northside High School where he was captain of the drum line and Band President. He later went on to attend ITT Technical Institute where he received his Bachelor’s Degree in Electronic Engineering and Computer Science. Before becoming the Program Director for the Oakhaven Club, Kelly worked for the Parks & Neighborhoods division for the City of Memphis for seven years as a Recreation Leader. His love and desire to see children and young adults achieve their goals and see their dreams fulfilled are what drives him to do his job to the best of his ability
Email: kellyt [at] bgcm [dot] org