Sandy Club opens new building after decades in basement
Oct 28, 2016 10:12AM
● By Kelly Cannon
Director Linda Martinez Saville and Mayor Tom Dolan cut the ribbon to open the new location of the Sandy Club, A Safe Place for Boys and Girls. (Kelly Cannon/City Journals)
Sandy Club opens new building after decades in basement [1 Image] Click Any Image To Expand
By Kelly Cannon | [email protected]
Sandy, Utah - After two decades in the basement of the Sandy Parks and Recreation Department, the Sandy Club, A Safe Place for Boys and Girls, officially opened its new location. The nonprofit, which offers a safe space for children to come to after school, held a special ribbon-cutting ceremony on Sept. 28 and invited various members of Sandy government and community.
During the ribbon-cutting ceremony, Linda Martinez Saville, director of the Sandy Club, A Safe Place for Boys and Girls, thanked the mayor, various local businesses and the Sandy Area Chamber of Commerce, as well as members of the staff and volunteers.
“Everyone has done something for us,” Saville said.
Mayor Tom Dolan took time to thank Saville for her tenacious and tireless effort to provide a safe space for the kids of Sandy.
“This would not exist without Linda. She may be small in stature but she is a fighter. Without her determination and will, this would not have happened,” Dolan said. “This is a good thing. Bless you Linda and all who helped you in this.”
The idea for the Sandy Club, A Safe Place for Boys and Girls, started 23 years ago when Saville wanted to create a safe space for kids after school
“This will be such a great place for children to come to every day after school and their parents will know they are safe and they’re being educated and we’re taking good care of them.”
Saville went to the Sandy mayor asking if there was a location she could use. The mayor responded that if she found a place, she should call him. Saville eventually found the basement of the Parks and Recreation Department, which was being used for storage. Saville quickly called the mayor and received approval to turn the space into the Sandy Club, A Safe Place for Boys and Girls.
“That was such a happy day. I was so excited,” Saville said. “I started tearing down walls. I started painting and doing a check-in area for the kids.”
Eventually, the basement location became too crowded as the program became more and more successful. Saville and the board of directors began looking for a location to build a building just for the Sandy Club, A Safe Place for Boys and Girls. Jim Hofeling, the chair of the board of directors, told Saville if she wanted a new building, that’s all she had to say.
“They love this club. They have the same dream that I had,” Saville said. “I know the the only reason this happened is because we were all on the same page.”
The Sandy Club, A Safe Place for Boys and Girls provides kids in the community a safe space to go to after school. Each day is divided into three sections. When the kids first arrive, they have free time to play computer games, video games, color, read or play sports in the gym. The second hour is devoted to exercise, such as soccer and basketball. During the last hour, kids do their homework. The club provides volunteers and staff members to help the kids if needed.
The club also has a donation room filled with items kids might need and are free for them to take. This includes shoes, winter coats, socks and underwear. The club also provides vouchers to Deseret Industries to parents who may be starting from scratch and need to purchase furniture for their home.
“We have all those things to help families in our city and our community and they can come for help,” Saville said.
Saville asked the kids what they thought about the new building.
“The kids always say that it’s safe,” Saville said. “I just thought, how awesome is that.”
To learn more about the Sandy Club, A Safe Place for Boys and Girls, visit thesandyclub.org.