Middle School Game Night
Children do finish their homework (eventually). Often, time spent with family is enough to fill out the rest of the evening, but whether they express it or not, most children also desire regular time with friends their age with no scholarly strings attached. Unfortunately, this desire can easily turn into desperation, leading kids to spend time with the first people who call on them. Children need constant, true, and encouraging friendships, and when relationships of this kind are absent, the void will be filled with the next best alternative, which unfortunately could be the foul-mouthed neighbor who is the first person under the age of 12 to ask your child if he wants to shoot some hoops.
The goal of Game Night at the Barn is to facilitate fertile ground for friendships that are not only regular, but healthy. Barring major holiday or conflicts due to illness, Game Night happens every week, and most of the kids who join us rarely miss a week. And why not? After a half a month, kids start to get excited about who they can expect to see. Game Night starts as a couple of hours of video games, sports, or general entertainment to combat what might otherwise be an uneventful evening, but in the end, it fulfills a deeper need: That your kids want friendship, rest and relaxation from school, and possibly the chance to talk with an adult who isn’t a parent or teacher. Your kids are growing up, and their lives are being affected by who they spend their time with.
At The Barn Youth Center, we want your children to grow positively, whether from our ten minute break to talk about an important life lesson or two, or from advice that they gather off-the-cuff from an adult leader or a good friend. And of course, we want them to have fun so that they want to come back. If kids keep asking their parents when they can go to Game Night again, then we can know we are doing something right.
The attraction to belong, to be part of something is strong. An American phenomenon is rapid rise of gangs. Our little corner of the world is not exempt.
To combat this unhealthy trend, we have formed a partnership with a couple familiar with gang life, to offer alternatives and to assist those who have entered into the web of deceit that gangs offer. “Gang Out” meets on Friday nights, with the goal of building honest and lasting relationships.
Youth Diversion Program
Bad choices accompanied with poor decisions often lead young people into a brush with the law. Instead of being tagged by the juvenile court system, first time minor infraction offenders can be diverted into a program where they must take responsibility for their actions. One component of this program is community service. We work with these young people, helping them complete their required hours of community service, and in the process we have the opportunity to build relationships and mentor them in life issues.
Our newest venture, the service project arm, works with groups desiring to do service projects in the local community. We align area projects with local groups, providing the necessary tools, resources, equipment, and training. All the group needs to do is provide the manpower!