Children heading back to school is music to the ears of many parents. Michelle Birkhead even had after school care set up for her two kids at the Sanger Boys & Girls Club of North Central Texas because they loved it so much.
"They would have snacks for the kids," Birkhead, a mother of two, said. "They would feed them lunches and the kids just truly loved being around other kids their ages and playing on a day-to-day basis."
But those plans abruptly changed, costing her about $300.
"On Friday, we got this notice that no more," Birkhead said. "They just completely shut down and it was our only plan. It just left us and many other families scrambling for where to put our kids during the school year."
The Boys & Girls Clubs of North Central Texas gave notice to parents, and posted on their doors, that the Sanger and Lake Dallas facilities were suspending service until further notice. But that was very little notice for families with young children.
"They gave us notice on Friday and said as of Monday that's it, our doors are locked and nobody is answering the phone and there is just no explanation," Birkhead said. "It just makes it so hard for the families."
The Boys & Girls Clubs of North Central Texas issued the following statement Monday.
For nearly 25 years the Boys and Girls Club of North Central Texas has been providing a safe and positive place for kids after school. Our youth development programs and services have helped hundreds if not thousands of Denton County youth become better adults. Unfortunately, with extremely low enrollment and circumstances beyond our control it was not financially viable to remain open at this time. Our goal is to expedite refunds to all individuals in the near future.
The posted notice said registration payments would be returned as soon as they are able.
Parents who've paid just don't know when that could happen.
"I think the most frustrating part was that they took our money," Birkhead said. "I had paid just that week for the following week for the month of services and they took our money. One of our friends paid that morning."
There are no reports of any other facilities being effected. The suspending of services only includes the Boys & Girls Clubs of North Central Texas' Sanger and Lake Dallas facilities.
Nationally the Boys & Girls Clubs of America annually serves 4.73 million young people in 4,645 clubs throughout the country.