Health & Life Skills

Healthy Clubhouse Environment

Nutrition: BGCSF has a Citywide nutrition policy to ensure that youth have consistent access to healthy food and receive the same messages at each Clubhouse. Replacing sugary and fast foods with fruits, vegetables and whole grains has been shown to significantly improve youth’s behavior and academic performance.BGCSF provides free daily snacks and summer lunches that comply with our nutrition policy, so that each member has access to healthy food options

Physical Activity: Experts recommend that all youth participate in at least 60 minutes of physical activity each day. The responsibility for ensuring that young people are active each day should be shared by parents, schools, community groups, and after school programs. Each Clubhouse has dedicated physical activity time during the school-year and summer and a variety of programs and activities to appeal to varied interests, as well as girls-only and age specific activity options.

BGCSF Club Youth Promote Play

With support from a Healthy Hearts SF grant, BGCSF members participated in a summer workshop with eco hip-hop artist DJ Cavem and nutritionist/DJ Alkemia Earth. Youth were selected to help write lyrics and star in a music video about physical activity and nutrition. Forty seven members from Don Fisher Clubhouse, Excelsior Clubhouse, Sunnydale Clubhouse and Willie Mays Boys & Girls Club at Hunters Point participated in this project, which reflects a special initiative in BGCSF’s new strategic plan to strengthen the voice of youth in our organization and in our world.

Health Education & Promotion

Access to Health Services

Nutrition: BGCSFprovides cooking classes at our Clubhouses to promote healthy eating. We are fortunate to have an Edible Schoolyard at our Willie Mays Clubhouse at Hunters Point,where members have access to a 2,000 square foot garden, cooking classes and gardening programs. In addition to our Willie Mays Clubhouse, gardening programs are also offered at our Columbia Park and Sunnydale Clubs.

Healthy Decision Making: We offer a healthy decision making program, called WhyTry, which is a hands-on curriculum that helps youth overcome their challenges and improve outcomes in the areas of truancy, behavior, and academics. WhyTry teaches critical, social and emotional principles such as resisting peer-pressure and that decisions have consequences.

As a way to instill healthy relationships among our teen population, BGCSF offers a series of workshops that cover the following topics: healthy teen dating, STIs, pregnancy prevention, anti-homophobia, and sexual assault/rape prevention. It also includes a field trip to a local reproductive health clinic.

Nutrition: Vision: BGCSF provides gift certificates from Vision Service Providers (VSP) for free eye exams and eye glasses for uninsured members and adult family members in need. A social security number is required.

Condom Availability Program: The Condom Availability Program emphasizes that abstaining from sexual activity is the only 100% effective way to avoid exposure to STIs and HIV. California Family Code 6925 gives minors the right to participate in the program without parental permission. However, we recognize that parents are their children’s primary teachers and we encourage parents to discuss issues of sexual health with their children.

Free condoms are available to Club members ages 13-18 by Teen Directors trained in condom education and during condom education workshops led by health educators. This program is modeled after the school district’s program that began in 1993.