Boys & Girls Club of Laguna Beach receives Hero of Youth Award

Boys & Girls Club of Laguna Beach, also serving Saddleback Valley, received a Hero of Youth award from the national Boys & Girls Clubs of America for their advocacy on behalf of California’s youth.

“Clubs like ours have a unique role as community leaders in providing valuable afterschool programs to our country’s youth that enable them to achieve great futures,” said Pam Estes, CEO. “We are wholly committed to raising the visibility of the needs of youth in our community, especially the ones who need us most, and show what we can accomplish with the support of our elected officials and our community.”

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Courtesy of BGCLB

Club teens get valuable experience interning for the office of Senator Dave Min (center)

Last year, State Sen. Dave Min named the Boys & Girls Club of Laguna Beach the Non-Profit of the Year, and this year CEO Pam Estes was named by Sen. Min a “Woman of Distinction” for her work advocating for youth in Laguna Beach and Saddleback Valley.

Most recently the club participated in Boys & Girls Clubs’ CA Alliance Days of Advocacy in Sacramento on April 16 and 17. Meetings were held at the State Capital with Sen. Dave Min, Assemblyperson Diane Dixon, the offices of State Sen. Catherine Blakespear and Assemblyperson Kate Sanchez. Discussions also took place with Michael Funk, director, Expanded Learning, CDE and Dr. Sohil Sud, director, CA Child and Youth Behavioral Health Initiative.

The growing relationship between the club and Sen. Min underscores the organization’s influential role in policy advocacy, paving the way for unique opportunities for its members and volunteers. Notably, this partnership has led to the creation of internship opportunities within Sen. Min’s office. Recognizing the dedication and potential of the club’s teen members, Sen. Min initiated this program. Through active participation in legislative processes and advocacy work, a standout member secured an internship with Sen. Min, offering invaluable governmental experience. This collaboration strengthens ties between the nonprofit and legislative sectors, amplifying the voices of young people in governance.

“Because of the steadfast advocacy of leaders like Boys & Girls Club of Laguna Beach, our nation’s youth have access to skills and experiences that can put them on the path to great futures,” said Jim Clark, CEO & President of Boys & Girls Clubs of America.

 “These successes aren’t possible without a strong partnership with elected officials at the local, State and Federal levels. I commend the Boys & Girls Club of Laguna Beach for their tireless work on behalf of their community’s youth and congratulate them on this much-deserved recognition.”

“Boys & Girls Clubs champion opportunities for all youth, equipping young people with the experiences and tools they need to succeed,” said CEO Pam Estes. “Our advocacy isn’t just a one-day event. We are raising our voices every single day, to ensure top issues and solutions impacting young people are prioritized in our community, our state and at the national level.”


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