An after-school class. A safe place to play. A new skill. A healthy snack. A high five. It doesn’t take much to make an impact on a young student. And for four years now, the Mahomet Area Youth Club (MAYC) has met the needs of students of all income levels in the Mahomet-Seymour School system with B.L.A.S.T. (Bulldogs Learning and Succeeding Together) programming.
B.L.A.S.T. was established in 2013 when MAYC saw numbers at the Clubhouse, located on Franklin Street, dwindling. In the years prior, MAYC’s after school program saw 30 to 40 kids, ages 6 to 17, per year.
Once MAYC entered into a $130,000 per year agreement with the Mahomet-Seymour School District to host after school enrichment programming on-campus, the club was able to reach hundreds of students in grades 1-8.
Not only has MAYC provided a safe place for students to go after school, but with B.L.A.S.T. programming students have had the opportunity to learn about money management, Lego Robotics, writing, technology, cooking and crafts.
Programming at Mahomet-Seymour Junior High has varied over the year because unlike the elementary school, MSJHS offers extra-curricular activities for students to participate in. While MAYC has hosted board game and cooking classes for teenagers, the club has also provided an after school club for students to receive extra help on homework and funded scholarships for students who would otherwise not be able to participate in after-school activities at the junior high and high school level.
Keeping in mind that 18-percent of Mahomet-Seymour’s school population qualifies for the free and reduced lunch program, MAYC wanted to ensure that students who had a place at MAYC prior to 2013 were not lost. MAYC reserves 25-percent of allotted B.L.A.S.T. class spots for students with financial need.
Because of this, MAYC, which only served about three first and second grade students prior to the merger, now reaches over 200 students in the same age range in any given year.
MAYC’s $130,000 per year commitment to the Mahomet-Seymour School District to fund the B.L.A.S.T. programming is not all MAYC has on its plate. They have also continued to own and maintain the clubhouse located on Franklin Street and are now renovating a space at 700 W Main Street where students will be welcome for summer activities.
Because MAYC programming is funded through donations from local organizations and fundraisers, MAYC invites Mahomet residents to join them at the MAYC Boot Scootin’ Auction and Barn Dance on June 19 from 5:30 to 11 p.m. at Shroeder Farms.
This year’s MAYC Boot Scootin
Tickets are $50 per person, and can be purchased online at www.maycauction.com.