The Boys & Girls Clubs of South Puget Sound has been partnering with the military to help teach kids the importance of leadership, teamwork, and dedication. September 28th will be no exception; six excited Boys & Girls Club members from the Lakewood Branch will be traveling to Safeco Field in Seattle to perform the Color Guard for all to see during the Mariner‚Äôs home game. The kids have taken part in many activities to prepare for this big day.
One such event that helped in preparing the kids was a miniature boot camp. It was an opportunity for the kids to spend time with the cadets who came dressed in their physical training uniforms. They had the Club members do stretching, push ups, sit ups, and running. They even performed a drill ceremony, allowing each member the opportunity to lead a team. The cadets instilled the importance of good grades, and building positive self confidence. They also held a tug-of-war competition to visually display the power of teamwork. The cadets have also given presentations to audiences of Club members and guests about important topics such as the consequences of stealing. It is a fun way for the kids to learn, through mentorship, about the importance of right and wrong.
In order to prepare the kids for the upcoming Color Guard ceremony they will be teaming up with the Air Force Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps (AFJROTC) squadron from Bethel High School in Spanaway and practicing for a week prior to the event. The Color Guard is a ceremony in which the national anthem is played and the Washington State, Army, and Air Force flags are held in a forward position honoring the United States Flag. Presenting the colors takes a great deal of teamwork and practice to make sure that everyone knows their part. In this ceremony four kids will be carrying the United States, Washington State, Army, and Air Force flags and two kids will be guards holding demilitarized training rifles. The kids will have to learn where to stand, how to hold their flags or rifles, and the order upon which they will be walking out onto the field. Being part of Junior ROTC takes an enormous amount of perseverance to overcome obstacles, respect others, and pass along your knowledge. Partnering with the military is one way the Boys & Girls Clubs of South Puget Sound is continuing to instill these values among their current Club members as well as future generations to come.