By James Cullum
ALEXANDRIA,VA- The Dunbar Olympic Boys & Girls Club received some early back-to-school gifts on Friday, Aug. 23! The family of the late Wilson Thompson, president of the former Queen Street Business Association, was on-hand to see the organization hand out its last $2,000 to the club in the form of new gymnasium mats, a Nintendo Switch, basketballs, footballs, and other gear.
“Wilson [Thompson] had a strong commitment to the community and helping minority businesses,” said former Alexandria Mayor Bill Euille.
Alston Waller, the Boys & Girls Club branch director, said that Thompson worked across the street for decades and routinely waved at the children entering and leaving the building at 401 N Payne St.
“These gifts are more of a recruiting tool to bring in more kids, because these kids don’t have anything else to do,” Waller said.
It was Keith Calhoun, the former treasurer of the QSBA, who thought of the donation.
“A lot of it is about publicity for the Boys & Girls Club, and broadening the horizons of what these kids see and do,” Calhoun said. “I thought it would be a good thing, and I’m glad to be in a position to help.”
The Boys & Girls Club currently needs healthy snacks for kids, including juice boxes, fresh fruit and yogurt.
The 5th Annual Class Is N Session [CINS] will be held on Sunday, Aug. 25 at the club, and participants will be able to indulge in classroom sessions focused on STEM, Health & Wellness, and Finance. Following the classroom session, free haircuts and braided styles will be provided in addition to manicures, food, book bags and school supplies. The event is free and open to the public. Find out more at www.bgcgw.org/clubs/dunbar-alexandria-olympic-branch/.