The Boys & Girls Clubs of Fresno County has been named a 2023 Neighborhood Champion by Bank of America, recognizing its work with at-risk youth in the region.
The nonprofit organization, which will mark its 75th anniversary in 2024, will use the $50,000 grant for leadership training and development.
The initiative is part of Bank of America’s Neighborhood Builders program, one of the country’s largest philanthropic investments in nonprofit leadership development.
Kathryn Weakland, vice president of development for all Fresno County Clubs, said the grant will help the organization develop leadership and craft a strategic plan.
“Like everyone else, the pandemic changed us. We’ve overcome tremendous obstacles like staff turnover and know employee training is even more critical,” Weakland said. “Ensuring the safety of the youth is our top priority. This grant will equip our staff with the tools needed to help our kids succeed in life.”
Previous Recipients and the Importance of the Grant
The Boys & Girls Clubs’ 14 locations serve over 4,000 youth in Fresno and surrounding areas. Previous recipients of the Neighborhood Champion grants have found them extremely beneficial, as training and development are often difficult to budget for.
The Neighborhood Champions program is invitation-only and highly competitive. Nonprofits are selected by a committee of community leaders and past awardees. Since the program expanded to the Fresno region in 2019, five nonprofits have been selected as Champions, with Bank of America investing $250,000 into these local nonprofits.
Mark Riley, president of Bank of America Fresno/Visalia, said nonprofits are vital to solving social challenges, improving communities, and promoting economic advancement.