The Sandy Club Breaks Ground on New Center
By Stacy Nielsen
Sandy - After being in the same place for the last 21 years, The Sandy Club, A Safe Place for Boys and Girls, broke ground for their new 12,400-square-foot center on Oct. 21.
The new site is located at 440 East 8680 South and includes a new preschool focused primarily on teaching little children to read as early as the age of three.
Dozens were in attendance including Mayor Dolan, Sandy City Council, the board of trustees and an estimated 120 kids for the ribbon-cutting ceremony with Stand Parish and the chamber of commerce. Also in attendance were special guests and beneficiaries of The Sandy Club, Clark and Barbara Stringham, Larry H. Miller Family Foundation, Kip and Ann Wadsworth, Ralph L. Wadsworth and George S. and Dolores Dore Eccles.
“(We) would not be as successful as we are without the help and the love of the kids, the staff and our board of trustees, and especially the people in this community that support us,” newly re-elected councilwoman at-large and director of The Sandy Club, Linda Martinez Saville, said.
The Sandy Club currently serves 90-120 kids, and with this new expansion will be able to serve 150-160 children ranging in ages three to 18. The Club also features the F.L.I.P. program (Future Leaders in Progress) to help kids learn to work by teaching office and additional skills, such as how to fill an out an application. The children can also get help with math or English, and also receive help in preparing for college; the club offers a scholarship fund to help older children get through college. Most of the staffers that work at the club now were raised in the club, and all but two are in college.
“It’s great to see the staff give back the way they were helped,” Martinez Saville said. “We did hand out bubbles to all the children and told them to blow a bubble and make a wish, and they all did. Afterwards, I asked one little girl what she wished for. She is five years old and is so cute. She said she just wished that the new club will be as safe as the old club. So many of our kids feel this is the safest place they go to every day. We are so lucky to have such a safe haven.”
The club anticipates being completed before the summer of 2016.
“This club matters because it truly changes the trajectory of children’s lives. Without having a safe place to learn, grow and develop, many of these kids would not be able to truly succeed in life,” Mayor Tom Dolan said.
For more information on how to join or support the club, visit www.thesandyclub.org