Rotary funds new program for Boys & Girls Clubs of Tupelo

Adam Robison | Buy at photos.djournal.com Jerry Napier, left, president of the Rotary Club of Tupelo, presents a $4,000 grant Zell Long, chief professional officer for Boys & Girls Clubs of North Mississippi.

Adam Robison | Buy at photos.djournal.com
Jerry Napier, left, president of the Rotary Club of Tupelo, presents a $4,000 grant Zell Long, chief professional officer for Boys & Girls Clubs of North Mississippi.

By Chris Kieffer

Daily Journal

TUPELO – The Boys & Girls Clubs of Tupelo received a grant on Monday to fund a new program that helps its members make good life choices.

The $4,000 grant will be used for the SMART Moves program at both the Haven Acres and Northside locations. The Rotary District 6800 Rotary Foundation and Tupelo Rotary Club each funded $2,000, and the check was presented during Monday’s Rotary meeting.

“This funding means so much to our organization,” said Zell Long, chief professional officer for Boys & Girls Clubs of North Mississippi.

SMART Moves addresses conflict resolution and abstinence from premature sexual activity and from alcohol, drug and tobacco use. It will include age-appropriate lessons for the club members ages 6 to 18.

The funding will support training, field trips and the purchase of manuals and T-shirts.

“We want to make it fun and exciting,” Long said. “Kids come to our club because it is fun, and while they are there, we teach them important things about life.”

Boys & Girls Clubs of North Mississippi also oversees clubhouses in New Albany, Oxford and Ripley. Long said those locations also use the SMART Moves program, although it is funded by other sources.

The acronym stands for Skills Management and Resistance Training.

chris.kieffer@journalinc.com