Benton Harbor Boys & Girls Club members create music video campaign
BENTON HARBOR, Mich. -- The boys and girls of Benton Harbor’s Boys & Girls Club released a music video Friday evening to show their thanks to the dozens of donors who fund their organization.
“They’re wanting to show the entire world, entire country, other Boys & Girls Clubs, how proud they are to be a member of the Boys & Girls Club,” said Liji Hanny, the director of operations at Benton Harbor’s club.
The music video is called the “#ClubKidChallenge.”
The club members who made it hope it will trigger a national campaign that prompts other Boys & Girls Clubs across the country to make their own videos.
The kids spent the last month writing, choreographing, filming, and editing the music video – all with help from a 19-year-old volunteer.
“Our kids get to learn about lighting. They get to learn about photography. They also get to learn about organizing a group of people for a photoshoot,” Hanny said.
He added that the process of making the music video served as a great leadership opportunity for the kids who participated.
The video also serves as a ‘thank you’ to the 80 local organizations that donate time, money and resources to keep the Boys & Girls Club up and running.
“To have 80 different organizations say that they believe in what we do, they believe in our mission to inspire and enable all young people to realize their full potential as productive and responsible citizens, it’s just absolutely humbling,” Hanny said.
Around 1,500 Benton Harbor kids come to the Boys & Girls Club throughout the year.
The club – which serves at least 300 kids each day – has an annual operating budget of about $2 million that mostly comes from donations.
When the kids aren’t shooting music videos, they’re shooting for new heights through in-depth programming and activities.
Hanny said the club prides itself on the fact that 92 percent of its members graduate from high school.
Benton Harbor High School Senior Jaylen Vinson, who has been a member for 8 years, said the message behind the video is what the kids learn at the club: anything is possible.
“No matter what environment you live in or different atmosphere – or what you go through in life – you can always overcome things,” Vinson said. “And everything should be fun, no matter what.”
To watch the full #ClubKidChallenge music video, click here.