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Boys and Girls Club of Indianapolis celebrates youth in the area

Boys and Girls Club of Indianapolis recognizes youth in the area

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Every year, the Boys and Girls Club of Indianapolis hosts the Blue Door Gala. It’s an event to help raise funds, but more importantly, to celebrate the youth.

“I think it’s so important we take time and pause celebrating our kids. We have a blast planning this event, getting dressed up, and throwing on our tennis shoes. We want to make sure our kids know that they are loved and celebrated,” said Maggie Lewis, CEO of the Boys and Girls Club of Indianapolis.

Arael Stigler is a senior at Lawrence Central High School. She’s been going to the Boys and Girls Club for more than eight years. She’s one of the honorees at the Blue Door Gala.

“It’s nice to be recognized, that people see me in a positive light. My good deeds aren’t going to waste, that someone actually sees that I’m doing the right thing,” said Stigler.

“I think what happens behind our blue doors is so special. The bonding and the mentoring that is happening between our team members and our young people are so special, and I think it’s so important that every kid knows there is someone that cares about them and watching everything that they’re doing,” said Lewis.

Stigler plans to go to college and become a nurse. She says if it wasn’t for the Boys and Girls Club, she’s not sure she would be able to do that.

“Coming from a rough neighborhood, it was great to have a place to go to and meet new people, see new people, meet new friends. It’s helped me my entire life,” said Stigler.

Lewis says the community support is great to see as well.

“I’m so humbled by the support we get each year for this event. we’re expecting 400 people to be here to support our babies,” said Lewis.

Arael has a message for any young person who has thought about going to the Boys and Girls Club.

“There’s so many activities and opportunities you can get through the Boys and Girls Club. I’ve met so many people and been to so many things just based off of where I’ve been with the Boys and Girls Club. It’s amazing. Please go,” said Stigler.