May 16, 2012 7:14 PM
TUCSON - The Boys and Girls Club of Tucson website boldly sates, "Great Futures Start Here." Every year, the Boys and Girls Club proves it by turning out great kids with big goals. But that can't be done without a lot of help from the community.
Jim Click, Lute Olson, and News 4 Tucson General Manager Bill Shaw are just a few of the local community leaders who donate time and money to the Boys and Girls Clubs of Tucson.
Anthony Wimberly is one of thousands of kids who benefit from that support. Wimberly has been going to the Boys and Girls Club just about every day for the past six years.
"It really has been my second home and I thank everyone for what they've done here," said 18-year-old Wimberly. He will attend Pima Community College starting in the fall, thanks to several scholarships he's won through the Boys and Girls Club.
Wimberly was recently named Boys and Girls Club State Youth of the Year. An impressive feat, considering Wimberly is a shy kid who overcame a speech impediment to become a polished public speaker.
His life has been filled with turmoil. His parents fought all the time before splitting up. His father, who was also his basketball coach at the Boys and Girls Club, died when Wimberly was 15. Many kids would've buckled under those conditions, but Wimberly didn't waiver.
"God gives you a path that will test you but will not break you," said Wimberly. Anthony is truly tested, yet unbroken, thanks to the Boys and Girls Club of Tucson.
Arreana Robles is also a Club Kid. She worked hard to graduate a year early and through the Boys and Girls Club, Arreana won a full scholarship to the Arizona Beauty Academy.
"I come from a low-income family, single mom," she says. "There is no money to pay for college and without the money I don't know where I'd be because getting into college would be really tough for me."
Carey White of the Arizona Beauty Academy teamed up with the club so girls like Arreana can shape their futures.
"Work in the field of cosmetology, support herself while she moves on with her further education. Then, hopefully, eventually become a small business owner herself," said White.
The Boys and Girls Clubs of Tucson are saving lives and building futures, thanks to the generous business leaders who keep the club doors open.