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80K for 80

Our Friend, Roger, Turns 80!

Longtime Boys & Girls Club friend, supporter and board member, Roger Ralph, turns 80 years old in September. In celebration of this milestone, he has a goal to raise $80,000 to support hiring AmeriCorps volunteers to work at Boys & Girls Clubs across Maryland.

To help Roger reach his goal, you can donate through our secure online form:

Pictured: CEO Jeff Breslin, Roger and Elaine Ralph

 

Progress to Goal

A Message from Roger

I have had the good fortune to have the time to be involved with Boys & Girls Clubs in Baltimore, Sarasota, and Harford County for over four decades as a volunteer.  I consider myself lucky that my wife Elaine and I had a business that allowed me to do this and even more lucky to be around for my 80th birthday this September.  Like many of you I’d predict when you reach this age, you’ll likely say something like this: “Oh my gosh, am I really that old? It seems ridiculous,” – and then go out and try to prove to yourself that you’re really closer to 60 than 80.

 

Instead of trying to run five miles I got the idea that for my 80th birthday I would try to raise $80,000 for Boys & Girls Clubs of Metropolitan Baltimore (BGCMB) to support hiring talented VISTA and AmeriCorps volunteers to work at BGCMB and other clubs in Maryland for a year.  Jeff Breslin worked for the Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation as VP for Programs and became the President and CEO of Boys & Girls Clubs of Metropolitan Baltimore in 2018.  I am a member of the BGCMB Board and Jeff is an old friend and a very talented and humble leader.  

 

An investment of $8,000 by a non-profit organization enables the host organization to hire a young capable caring person between the ages of 18 and 26 for 12 months of service with the host as an AmeriCorps or Vista volunteer. If they successfully complete a year of service, they are entitled to a $6,500 education award that can support previous or ongoing education costs and host organizations can opt to add to the volunteers’ cost of living stipend.

 

I am a big believer in National Service - and even more so in these times of great division and hardship for many Americans.  We know that the benefit to the host organization, Boys & Girls Club members, and the neighborhoods where they work is important- and for the volunteer frequently life changing. 

 

The timing of this birthday gift is fortuitous as the new AmeriCorp Director is Michael Smith, a former Youth of the Year and a member of the Boys & Girls Clubs of America Alumni Hall of  Fame. My hope is that here in Maryland and elsewhere several thoughtful National Service pilot projects are developed that will prove models for the rest of the country.

With gratitude, 

Roger

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