Dovercourt Boys & Girls Club

To provide a safe, supportive place where children and youth can experience new opportunities, overcome barriers, build positive relationships and develop confidence and skills for life.

Unity Day is when all the Boys and Girls Clubs come out to celebrate the many children that have been supported through the activities and programs faciliated with Boys and Girls Club. It is a Fun Day for camp councillors, program staff and the children!Our Impact Why We Exist

The Dovercourt Boys and Girls Club exists to ensure social change and provide the best opportunities to children in the local community and who are in need of an extra support system. We ensure that the children and youth, ages 7 to 17 are prepared in every way possible to be active members of society. Our core values include: inclusion and opportunity, respect and belonging, empowerment, collaboration and speaking out.

Inclusion and Opportunity

We strive to offer children and youth from all economic, cultural and social backgrounds access to resources, supports and opportunities that will enable them to overcome barriers and achieve their positive potential life.

Respect and Belonging

We provide a safe, supportive place, where every child is listened to, respected and valued in an environment of inclusion and acceptance. Our staff and volunteers model honesty, fair play, positive attitude, cooperation and respect for self and others.

Empowerment

We believe all young people can grow into responsible, contributing and self-reliant members of society. Through adventure, play and discovery, we encourage and empower them to develop healthy lifestyles, a life-long passion for learning, leadership and life skills, and a sense of social responsibilty.

Collaboration

We work together with families and volunteers in each community, in partnership with the public and private sector, to create health community solutions to provide children and youth with what they need for optimal development.

Speaking Out

We speak out on behalf of children, youth and their families to reduce disadvantage, enhance their lives and enable their voices and ideas to be heard.

The children who participated in the Character Development progam-Etiquette Classes were invited to the United Way Dinner with their teacher, where they were provided the opportunity to meet Mayor Tory.Our Story What We Do

History of Organization

Since 1958, The Dovercourt Boys & Girls Club has been an essential community resource providing positive alternatives to anti-social activities, crime and substance abuse for neighbourhood children and youth. The Club was initially incorporated in 1957 as the Dovercourt Boys' Club, to provide a variety of services to both boys and girls ages 7 to 17 years, as an alternative to gang activity in the area. In 2011, the Club celebrated the opening of a second floor addition. The new space includes a computer lab, teen lounge, greenhouse, planetarium and theatre aimed at providing exciting environmental, arts and drama focused programs.

Accolades and Accomplishments

In 1998, due to overwhelming demand, we opened a satellite location at 21 Randolph Avenue. This location was so successful that we quickly outgrew this space and moved to another location. In the spring of 2011, we were the successful bidder and acquired a brand new space through the City of Toronto at 1379 Bloor Street West. This will be the new permanent home of our second facility, the Junction Triangle Clubhouse. This move enables us to strengthen our positive influence in the area by reaching out to additional families and children who will truly benefit from our community focused partnership.

Kids worked on a banner using words and pictures to describe what the Afterschool Program means to them!Our Programs How We Do It

Dovercourt Boys and Girls Club brings out the best potential of every child. Our Club offers children, from pre-school to young adulthood, a safe, affordable, enriching and fun place to go after school and in the evening.

We provide challenging activities that encourage healthy living, personal growth, learning, and community involvement. We build self-esteem through supportive adult mentors and engaging activities that challenge and enrich the mind, body and spirit of each child.

Children's programs are mainly offered during the after-school period between 3:30pm and 6:00pm. This is when young people, if left unsupervised, are at highest risk of becoming victimized or drawn into negative or criminal activities.

Our programs provide opportunities to develop the skills and knowledge kids need to reach their full potential.

The types of programs offered by our Club include:

  • Afterschool Program: Physical activities, sports, and games; Homework Help; Computer and Technology skills and training;  Healthy Eating; Creative Arts and Environmental Awareness and Stewardship                      
  • Saturday Program including Breakfast Club
  • Evening Programs includes: Sport Leagues, Youth Basketball, Tournaments, Tutoring and French Tutoring
  • Character Development includes: Etiquette, Drumming, Guitar, Keyboard, Steel pan
  • Kickstart Program includes: Cooking Class, Baking Class, Extraordinary Creations
  • Teen Program includes: Talk back, Sport Night, Game Night and Cooking Class
  • Youth Leadership
  • Outreach Programs, operating currently at St. Helen's, John Bosco, Holy Rosary and St. Bruno
  • SMILE Program involves children and youth age 7 to 17 who require additional support outside of the Dovercourt Boys and Girls Club traditional programming. The Program focuses on assisting children with character development, inclusion and most importantly life skills.
  • Christmas Hamper Program: We partake as an organization, along with sponsors and donors in supporting families in the local community during the Christmas season with parishable food items, hats and mits to make Christmas easier for those who are in need.

Our Club also provides youth with a safe, stimulating place to go to between 600pm and 9:00pm to:

  • Connect with friends
  • Take part in sports and other physical activities
  • Receive academic support
  • Receive employment support and training
  • Obtain skills and career training
  • Learn how to become community leaders and give back

Through our youth leadership programs, teens have the opportunity to be leaders in their community through social action initiatives and other civic-focused programs.

 

Homework/Tutoring Program

The goal of the Homework/Tutoring program is to provide a safe, nurturing environment that encourages and supports children to develop strong study habits. Students work on their homework, reading and other projects in a quiet setting. Students can work collaboratively and quietly discuss their work.

Funding and Program Partners

The Homework/Tutoring program is offered in partnership with local schools from the Toronto Disctrict School Board and the Toronto Catholic District School Board. The after school program is offered at both of our main locations and on site at our outreach elementary schools. The program is made possible by the generous support of several funders including The Aki Latvala Foundation, United Way Toronto and York Region and the City of Toronto.

Program Impact

Over 200 children access our Homework/Tutoring program each week. As a result of their participation in the program, children stay in school and value learning; older youth engage as volunteers and mentors, and their experience helps them gain valuable skills that will help them obtain future employment.

Toronto's Vital Signs® indicator(s) addressed by Program

"Extensive research shows that high-school graduation is critical in breaking the cycle of poverty. High school dropouts are three times more likely to come from low-income families, but multiple factors within the school system, the family system and the community, contribute to the likelihood of a student dropping out of school."

(Toronto’s Vital Signs®, 2012 - Page 176)

Our two Clubhouses are situated in neighbourhoods that have few recreational facilities offering programs during critical hours. We develop tailored programs that support the social inclusion of all young people and provide them with the assistance they need to excel in school, which includes having certified teachers as members of our staff.

Participant Vignette

"Hi, my name is Emily. I enjoy coming to the Homework room because it is a good place to read, do your homework, talk with your friends and do so much more. The Homework room happens to be my favourite department in the whole club because it is a fun atmosphere. Although, we have to keep it at a low volume, it does not take away from the laughter and smiles I always see in the room." -Emily M - 12 years old.  

DBGC Youth Leadership Program and Teen Program

The DBGC Youth Leadership is designed to set up the youth of our community for success in leadership roles and youth-adult partnerships, thus increasing their employment options. In the Teen Program, youth explore issues affecting the world today; learn tools to help build healthy, sustainable, and equitable communities; and gain the skills they need in order to "be the change they wish to see in the world!"

The purpose of these programs are to develop the knowledge, skills, and understanding youth need to become effective leaders within culturally diverse communities. It provides the young people with essential knowledge and practical experience in vital skill areas such as communication, including active listening, feedback and coaching; problem solving; decision making; conflict resolution, negotiation and consensus building.

Funding and Program Partners

The Youth Leadership program is supported by local businesses and the local police division. Funding is provided through the Community Service Partnership, City of Toronto, United Way Toronto and York Region and Dovercourt Boys and Girls Club.

Program Impact

The DBGC Youth Leadership program has provided youth with a head-start when applying for post-secondary education.  The completion certificate they receive has added a unique dimension to their personal resumes and increases their chances of finding meaningful employment.  Further, many of our leaders become so engaged in their efforts that they become aware of a field of employment which they were previously unaware of.

Toronto's Vital Signs® indicator(s) addressed by Program

"Slightly less than half of Canadians over the age of 15 (47%) engaged in some form of voluntary activity in 2010 (the highest participation rate - 58% - was among those aged 15-24)"

(Toronto’s Vital Signs®, 2011 - Page 213)

Our Leadership Program shows our youth the positive impact that they can have by just volunteering a couple of hours a week, and this almost always results in interest in further volunteer opportunities with some of our partner agencies.

Participant Vignette

"Hi, my name is Chelsea and I am 15 years old.  I think the Youth Leadership Program is important because it trains us to be responsible, commit to working with kids and make a difference anyway we can. The job experience I gain may affect my future one day. I enjoy having an impact on the kids and seeing them smile a little brighter each day. The Club is a great, safe and fun environment." -Chelsea B, 15 years old.

Character Development

The Character Development Programs for ages 7 to 12, encourage interaction with other Club members while engaging in team building, indepedence, self-confidence and discipline along with morals on civilty. Programs such as guitar, drumming, steel pan, keyboard and etiquette classes use multiple mediums of expression-artistic, musically inclined and developing appropriate conduct in social settings. For some members this may mean learning activities that can strenthen other areas in their life, such as manners, appropriate behaviour and for others enhancing academic and communication skills. These programs motivate the youth to strive to reach his/her goals. Whether the youth are registered for the drumming or etiquette program, they will challenge themselves, become responsible and set goals for themselves that will be attainable through practice and self-discipline. By participating in Character Development, youth will have an opportunity to work independetly and as a team, thus mandatory skills needed in society, the workplace and to strive for excellence.

Funding and Program Partners

The Character Development Programs are supported by the Patrick and Barbara Keenan Foundation.

Program Impact

We believe that Character Development installs life lessons. Participants of Character Development will reap many benefits including self-discipline, self-confidence, a healthier body and mind set, and stronger relationships with peers and adults. The skills they develop while participating will translate to their other activities and commitments including school performance and family relationships.

Toronto's Vital Signs® indicator(s) addressed by Program

" Readiness to learn is a critical determinent of lifelong wellbeing, including mental and physical health. Children who begin school with age-appropriate physical, emotional, language/cognitive and communication skills are far less likely to experience difficulties later in life. "

(Toronto’s Vital Signs®, 2013 - Page 186)

All of our programs, but especiall this one, aim at ensuring that our members are building life skills and character for at least one hour during the time they are with us. 

Participant Vignette

Hi, my name is Cristian. I have learned so much from Guitar classes, such as the name of the chords and yesterday I learned how to tune the guitar. The teacher is nice to everybody. I've improved so much. When I started, I did not know anything about the guitar, but now I know so much. When I play the guitar I feel relaxed. Next week, the teacher will teach the other kids and myself how to play a song on the guitar. I like how he teaches me and when I am not correct he helps me.- Cristian Carpio-Cerqueira, age 11

The kids during Afterschool Program are encouraged to participate in Healthy Eating.What You Can Do

Homework/Tutoring Program

Activities a donation will support

Donations to the Homework/Tutoring program will allow the Club to hire additional program staff to work with the children on their various project and homework assignments. Due to the limited resources, and in order to help as many children as possible, each member is allotted a certain amount of time to work with the staff. Additional financial assistance will also allow the Club to recruit and train more volunteer tutors to work with the young students.  

Donation impact

With just one additional staff and six volunteer Tutors, Dovercourt Boys & Girls Club can work with up to 24 more children helping them reach their full academic potential.  This will allow much more time for one on one work for the members that ar in need of extra help.

DBGC Youth Leadership Program

Activities a donation will support

Donations to the DGBC Youth Leadership Program will allow us to hire additional program staff to work with an increased number of youth in our community and to help set them up for success.

Donation impact

The DBGC Youth Leadership program allows us to address the need for programs that help young people build their communication and leadership skills so they may become tomorrow's leaders in business, industry and the community. The program is not in competition with school programs or courses, or other established youth projects. Instead, it is a supplement to these programs, providing emphasis on communication, community engagement and leadership skills.

Character Development

Activities a donation will support

Donations to the Character Development programs will allow us to expand the programs and have additional programs and staff to work with an increased number of youth in our community.

Donation impact

Providing these young people with this program will not only educate and improve their quality of life, it will also give them the essential tools to live a well-balanced life.

Contact

Sheldon Taylor
Executive Director
416.536.4102 x205
Charitable Number: 127722304RR0001

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