Sheri Samson
New Boys & Girls Club site director Lyndsey Burall.

Lyndsey Burall, who recently located to this area, is the new competent, smiling face you will meet at the Boys and Girls Club. She took the position of Mineral County site director at the Hawthorne location, bringing with her over four years of after-school program experience, a bachelor degree in Liberal Studies/English and a school teaching background. Her best asset for the program is her excitement and vision to make the club a vital place for kids within this community.

“I am all about structure, balanced with fun and learning. My experience has provided me with mentors that showed me the value of rewarding and building children up, while allowing them the ability to express their talents in various ways. The Boys and Girls Club values are the same as mine in that the theme is “The Positive Place for Kids” and that will definitely fit my criteria in the many years ahead.”

Burall sat with scheduled sheets of themes, time frames which included quality snacks made by Kira Garland, homework assistance, physical activity and crafting. Surrounding her desk were stacks of donated board games, table games and a container of balls. A current theme of winter animals were being worked on, displaying some paper plate art made by the attending children with a focus on their rural environment.

Building the basics will be part of Burall’s task, including receiving community donations that could range from monetary to actual activity items. Since the Armory building was recently designated strictly for the Boys and Girls Club use, its sterile walls, empty rooms and weedy outdoor yard could use some freshening up. Burall mentioned an immediate need for large bookcases, desks and office equipment to round out the lack of storage.

“This building has great bones – but it doesn’t give a kid-friendly message yet. We will be developing a mural project, hopefully with our local artists donating their time and energy in creating an inviting environment for our kids. Even large inspirational posters or themed items which could be hung up would be helpful, as we are still under the Mason Valley leadership and need to build up our own strong base over time.”

The mission of this organization is to enable all young people, especially those who need them the most, to reach their full potential as productive, caring, responsible citizens. The core programs listed in a brochure note that character and leadership development, education and career development, health and life skills, the arts, sports, fitness and recreation are the mainstay of their activities.

Burall shared that retired volunteers are welcome and snacks are available to anyone. The reduced membership fee is currently $10 per year and sponsorships are appreciated. Day fees are $5 per week or $1 per day, with varying amounts for multiple siblings attending. Local companies are welcome to participate through programs or events, as well as having community members stop in. A family spaghetti night is scheduled for Feb. 17 at 6 p.m. which will be free to the public.

You are welcome to call 775-945-2428 with further questions, donations or to volunteer.