BRIGHTON, Colo (CBS4) – Over the years that CBS4 and its partners have held the Together 4 Colorado Toy Drive, countless kids have said that the Boys & Girls Club is like a second home, and for those kids’ parents, it’s the extended family they’ve come to rely on, especially during the holidays.

kendra Boys & Girls Clubs Offer Support For Struggling Families

(credit CBS)

At the Shopneck Boys and Girls Club in Brighton, Kendra works as a Peer Leader in the Education Room.

“So I help the kids read, and help them with their homework. And, there’s a lot of kids who come in who I get to see grow as a person,” Kendra explained.

kendra 2 Boys & Girls Clubs Offer Support For Struggling Families

(credit CBS)

In the four years that she’s gone to the club, Kendra has also grown as a person.

“It definitely opens me up a lot. It gave me the opportunity to be a better person in the long run,” she told CBS4.

The 15-year-old has friends, responsibilities, and a safe space to get her homework done.

“I love it so much. It’s definitely my second home,” Kendra said.

kendra 5 Boys & Girls Clubs Offer Support For Struggling Families

(credit CBS)

The club is also a second home for Kendra’s two brothers, and her single mother is thrilled about that.

“It’s wonderful. It’s a lot off my shoulders to know that I don’t have to worry about them after school,” said Meghan, Kendra’s mom.

kendra 6 Boys & Girls Clubs Offer Support For Struggling Families

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When Ashley was working, she relied on the staff to make sure her kids had dinner and had their homework done. Recently though, she lost her job, and it’s putting stress on the family finances, especially at Christmas time.

“It’s a big stress…big stress. We’re trying to get through it one day at a time, pretty much,” Meghan explained.

toy drive1 Boys & Girls Clubs Offer Support For Struggling Families

(credit CBS)

Kendra and her brothers will get toys from the Together 4 Colorado Toy Drive to bring a little holiday cheer this year. It’s the kind of generosity kids at the clubs often rely on.

“Everybody here is a giant family. We’re always here for each other,” Kendra said.

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