April is Month of the Military Child!
Boys & Girls Clubs will join the military community in celebrating the Month of the Military Child in April. In 1986, former Defense Secretary Caspar Weinberger declared April as the month to honor the significant role children play in the Armed Services community. Throughout the month, Boys & Girls Clubs will participate in various forms of celebratory activities to recognize military service members and their children for their service to our country. In honor of military-connected youth, let’s join them in celebrating Purple Up Day by wearing purple on Thursday, April 13!
Military Youth of the Year
2016 – 2017 National Military Youth of the Year
Club/Organization: JB MD-Ft. Dix Youth Programs
Intended College/University: Air Force Academy
Career Aspiration: Fighter Pilot or Intelligence Officer
Arianna has moved every four years to a new military installation. Whether living in Germany or Japan, Arianna found a home at her Boys & Girls Clubs of America-affiliated Youth Program. When Arianna learned she was moving back to the United States, she was nervous about starting over again.
As soon as she walked into the Club, Arianna felt relief wash over her. She was greeted by warm, welcoming faces, and even a familiar one. The Club’s CEO had been stationed in Tokyo at the same time as Arianna’s family, and he had known her since she was a little girl. For military youth, change is a constant. Yet with Clubs located on U.S. military installations worldwide, these kids and teens are able to form important relationships, and in Arianna’s case, even have the chance to reconnect with old friends.
Arianna’s Club involvement has shaped her into a well-rounded young adult with strong leadership skills. She participates in programs like Career Launch, Money Matters, diplomas2Degrees, and even serves on the Air Force Teen Council.
Arianna plans to attend the Air Force Academy after she graduates from high school in 2019. She intends to become a fighter pilot or intelligence officer.
“My Club taught me that a little bit of fear is NOT a sign of weakness! It is a tool that can be used to help me not to become too comfortable with my life as a military teen. I am not afraid to give 100 percent as the Ambassador for our military youth.”