Odessa Boys and Girls Club's Seeing Significant Increase in Enro - KWES NewsWest 9 / Midland, Odessa, Big Spring, TX: newswest9.com |

Odessa Boys and Girls Club's Seeing Significant Increase in Enrollment

By Sylvia Gonzalez
NewsWest 9

ODESSA -  The end of the school year is fast approaching, for many parents that means the search is on for a way to keep their kids busy during the summer.  The Boys and Girls Club is a popular option but those who run the program are facing a few challenges of their own.

"The couple of years that I've been it was about 150 and 175 between the two clubs. This year, we are expecting probably close to 350 to 375. It will be a significant increase," Bill Baty, Sports Director at the Boys & Girls Club in Odessa, said.

Enrollment at both Boys and Girls Club's in Odessa began last week, the capacity at the Wilkerson Center is of 160 and as of Wednesday, 150 children were enrolled. The situation at the Woodson Unit is a little bit different in that they can take in about 70 more children. According to Baty, there is a reason why more children are being enrolled. 

"With the oil boom, a lot of people are coming in to work so that increased enrollment at both clubs," Baty said. 

However, the club is facing some challenges of their own. They don't have enough staff members to help out at the units and unfortunately it doesn't stop there. 
"The main thing that we would like to have at both centers is central air because right now we are using evaporative coolers. In the summertime, if it's getting humid, it will be hot and with about 300 to 350 kids in both units, it gets real hot in there. That's one of our major challenges we are trying to get is central air in both clubs," Baty said. 

He says they don't like putting any child on a waiting list. That's why he encourages parents to sign their kids up early before it's too late. 

"This year, the sooner you get in, the better chances are you get in because I know the list is going to start eventually," Baty said.
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