Thanks to a nearly yearlong project partnership between GTE Financial and the Nick Capitano Boys & Girls Club, teens at the Capitano Club will be able to enjoy their own space in the newly renovated Teen Room after the unveiling event held on Monday, Nov. 4. The two organizations are neighbors in Tampa, just east of downtown.
“This project was the dream of our former Chief Operating Officer E.C. Williams and Janine Valentin, Boys & Girls Club of Tampa Bay academic success program manager,” says Joe Brancucci, CEO and president of GTE Financial. “These are such great kids and we feel privileged to be able to give them a great space to enjoy. This is a great fit for our commitment to serving the needs of our community.”
The new Teen Room features a larger layout carved out of a former coach’s room and storage space, dressed up with new paint, wood flooring and furniture, a 30-inch LCD flat-screen TV, an XBox and games, laptop computers and wireless access. An estimated $10,500 and close to 200 volunteer hours have been invested in the project to date.
“This makeover is about more than entertainment – it means they can engage, interact and learn at a deeper level. Our teens are really going to love the time they spend here,” says Valentin. “We started by surveying them to see what would most appeal to them and followed their direction from the beginning, creating features they wanted, even down to choosing the paint colors. And thanks to one of the creative GTE folks, there’s a logo featuring their mascot, a rattlesnake, painted on the wall.”
Next to come will be the club’s Tech Room, which is undergoing its own makeover for completion by the end of 2013. The new Tech Room will provide space for up to 25 computers, as well as a Smart TV to allow the kids to connect and visually interact with other Boys & Girls Club members across the country through Skype – a first in the club’s history.
About GTE Financial:
GTE Financial is a not-for-profit financial cooperative with more than $1.6 billion in assets and 21 Community Financial Centers located throughout West Central Florida. Chartered in 1935, GTE Financial is locally owned and operated in the Tampa Bay area, serving more than 200,007 individuals and businesses. More information on GTE Financial can be found at www.gtefinancial.org.
About Boys & Girls Clubs of Tampa Bay:
Boys & Girls Clubs of Tampa Bay has been a positive force in the community for more than 85 years; enabling young people to become productive, responsible and caring citizens through structured programming, safe learning environments and dedicated staff. With a focus on three core priority outcomes – Academic Success, Healthy Lifestyles, and Improving Character & Leadership, Boys & Girls Clubs of Tampa Bay provides opportunities to build new skills that raise each Club Member’s belief that he or she can succeed and receive recognition for personal, social and academic accomplishments.