Katie’s 20 Days of Giving Challenge

Meet Katie Daykin, amazing Club kid and community leader at the ripe young age of 13! In the summer of 2020, Katie wanted to find a way to help her beloved Boys & Girls Club reopen after being shut down due to the financial strain of the pandemic. One afternoon, Executive Director Michelle Belleza found a handwritten card wedged between the front doors, with a $20 donation inside. “I decided to donate $20 from the soda cans we used,’ the note said. Michelle called Katie and her parents to say thank you. Katie explained she pooled some of her allowance along with the deposits she got from returning cans and bottles to help reopen the Club. To say we were moved is an understatement. To know a child would not only give up her allowance, but also use her time to collect cans and bottles to redeem to support her beloved Club was humbling, to say the least. We, the adults who lead the Club, the staff and Board of Directors, knew that if she could do something to make a difference, we all could. Katie’s 20 Days of Giving Challenge was launched, and with a LOT of help from Katie, we were able to turn her $20 donation into $2,000 for her Club that summer.

The next summer, Katie set a goal to raise $2,500. And in doing so, Katie inspired even more people–and businesses–to join the charge. Herlihy Insurance Group of Worcester matched the $2,500, and another anonymous donor was so moved he matched the TOTAL she raised ($5,689.10) bringing her grand total to ELEVEN THOUSAND,THREE HUNDRED AND SEVENTY EIGHT DOLLARS AND TWENTY CENTS!

Last year, when we asked Katie what her fundraising goal was, she answered “We need new furniture. Especially couches.” Our Club has been the fortunate recipient of LOTS of donated furniture, but as we’ve continued to grow, Katie was right–it was time to invest in durable, long-lasting furniture suitable for the wear and tear of a teen center. This would be costly, but an investment that will outlast anything we could get donated! We set our aim on $10,000 so Katie could help refurnish the Club!

Through unwavering determination, a mountain of cans and bottles, and a little bit of her own allowance (about $500 of it), Katie met her goal and brand new Boys-and-Girls-Club-Blue furniture arrived just in time for the 2023-2024 After School Program! And now, for the fourth annual Katie’s Challenge- Katie has set her sights on something a little less concrete.

Katie takes advantage of ALL the club has to offer- becoming member of the month, member of the year, and now a Junior Staff, she has done so much since the first day she walked through our doors. The goal of Katie’s Challenge 2023 is to provide much needed financial aid to families needing help covering After School Membership fees. This year, Katie wants to ensure that kids just like her can get homework help, have healthy active fun with peers, explore new interests like art and cooking and drama, and so much more. We’re hoping for this be the biggest Katie’s Challenge ever- because all kids deserve to have the club as a resource, as a safe haven, and as a second home, regardless of ability to pay.

We couldn’t do any of this without you. Please consider donating your cans and bottles between Friday, September 1st and Wednesday, September 20th. Cans and bottles can be left on the porch at the Boys & Girls Club. Donations can also be made here.

Thank you in advance for your support of Katie, our Club and all our kids!