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Building Bonds

The Club Zone Lachine is the evolution of the youth community centre, a place for today’s children and teens to engage their bodies, minds and spirits. From 3:30 pm to 8 pm daily, adolescents are given a chance to socialize and enjoy a vast array of activities in a couple of classrooms of Lakeside Academy.

In August 2017, through its Community Learning Centre, Lakeside Academy officially welcomed a new partner. After one year of planning, Club Zone de Lachine (formerly known as the Boys and Girls Club of Lachine) permanently moved their operations into the high school.

Occupying two classrooms and making use of the school’s gymnasium, dance room and weight room, Club Zone operates Monday through Friday from 3:30 – 8:00 p.m and is open to youth from ages nine to 17 from Lakeside Academy and its surrounding communities.

The partnership has been a positive one. The club’s Executive Director works closely with the CLC to develop activities that will be of interest to its participants. Every evening, students are offered a warm dinner and are encouraged to help with the preparation and cleanup of the meal. Each day is dedicated to a myriad of activities from Open Gym evening where upwards of 60 participants take part in organized sports to Beat the Chess Master, Teen Talk sessions, graffiti workshops, Dungeons and Dragons, Abada Capoeira sessions, homework help and a number of other activities. There is something to pique the interest of all the youth who attend the club.

Lakeside Academy’s CLC and Club Zone share a mandate to provide a safe, supportive space for youth to experience new opportunities, overcome barriers and build positive relationships. Previously, the club was located in a park chalet that was quite a distance away from Lakeside Academy. With most of its participants being from the high school, commuting was often an issue. By having Club Zone in the building, Lakeside students need not travel far to find a space to spend time after school. Youth from the community also find a safe and structured space to have dinner and participate in activities until the club closes.
Participants have been excited to try new things, new foods, make new friends and gain new skills. This partnership will only continue to grow as more youth begin to use the club and discover all the benefits that come with Club Zone de Lachine.

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