Client Shout Out: Boys & Girls Club of Oklahoma County
Becca Giles is the Development Manager for the Boys & Girls Club here in Oklahoma City. The Cory’s Audio Visual team often works with the passionate team behind their mission, so when we wanted to talk to one of our favorite clients, it was a no-brainer!
Here is what Becca had to say:
1. Tell us about the Boys & Girls Club of Oklahoma County. What is your mission? What are your events? What is your role?
The Boys & Girls Clubs of Oklahoma County exists to inspire and enable all young people, especially those who need us most, to reach their full potential as productive, responsible and caring citizens. We fill the gap between school and home. We provide a welcoming, positive environments in which kids and teens have fun, participate in life-changing programs, and build supportive relationships with peers and caring adults. Since 1995, BGCOKC has been at the forefront of youth development, working with young people from disadvantaged economic, social and family circumstances throughout Oklahoma City. We are working to help youth of all backgrounds – with special concern for those from disadvantaged circumstances – develop the qualities they need to become responsible citizens and leaders. The Boys & Girls Clubs of Oklahoma County serves over 800 young people daily, over 3,800 registered members and offers programs at four locations throughout Oklahoma County (Memorial Park, Cesar Chavez Elementary, Santa Fe South Elementary and Telstar Elementary).
We host 3 major events each year: Champions of Youth Celebration, Flight for Futures and Tee It Up Fore Kids’ Sake! Golf Tournament. Events play a large role in nonprofit fundraising and serve as a great way to gain the additional support of an organization. At our Champions of Youth Celebration, we are given the opportunity to honor Champions in our community that is making a difference in the lives of Oklahoma citizens and the youth we serve. Our Flight for Futures party is our most unique event. This is hosted in an airplane hangar and is a great way for us to engage a younger audience and spread awareness of all the great things we are doing at the Boys & Girls Club. Tee It Up Fore Kids’ Sake! is approaching its 16th year and has proved to be a wonderful opportunity to raise crucial funds for the youth we serve.
My role as Development Manager allows me to wear many different hats, as do many roles when working for a nonprofit. One day I might be an event planner, the next I am a spokesperson and the next day I could be over at one of our club sites hanging out with our club members! It’s hard to describe a typical day in my life because it’s always changing. What I have come to realize, however, the most important aspects of my job are the relationships I make. Whether the relationship is with a donor, volunteer, club member or vendor, it is my job to spread the mission of the Boys & Girls Club every opportunity I am given. People enjoy being part of something that helps other people and I consider myself lucky to be able to share those opportunities with everyone I come into contact with.
2. What are your biggest event challenges?
I would say the biggest challenge when it comes to events is the amount of time and effort it takes to plan. What many people might not realize is event planners rarely ever get to plan just one thing at a time. If you’re like me, it never ends! While an event may only last a couple hours, the planning that goes into it and the post-analysis goes on for months before and after the actual event. It is crucial that you take a hard look at each event you plan and make sure that the outcomes are truly making a positive difference for your organization. Ultimately, we host events to raise money and gain awareness. If we are not meeting those two objectives, all of the planning could be a waste. One way to make sure you are managing your time wisely is to surround yourself with people you can count on to make sure the event goes off without a hitch. Like Cory’s Audio Visual!
3. Why do you choose to work with the Cory’s Audio Visual team?
Why would anyone not choose the team at Cory’s Audio Visual to work with!? Cory’s Audio Visual has been a lifesaver for the Boys & Girls Club on more than one occasion. As an event planner, it is comforting to know that the vendors we work with are truly invested in the success of our event. Anytime there is an AV need, we call Cory’s Audio Visual. The team is easy to work with and always professional and polite. They take my vision for each event and bring it to life. Elizabeth has quickly become one of my favorite people to work with. The first time we ever had a conversation, she told me how much she cared for the Boys & Girls Club and what The Club does for our youth. It was very comforting to know that she saw us as more than just a client. She truly cared about the success of our event because she understood the importance of what the Boys & Girls Club does. My experience with Cory’s Audio Visual has been exceptional and I truly don’t think our events would be as successful without them.
4. What advice do you have for those wanting to make a difference through events?
My number one piece of advice for those who are wanting to make a difference through events is to never forget what you are doing it for. Make your mission the center of each event. Yes, people come to have a good time but what ultimately brought them to your event was you, the organization. We receive the most positive feedback when we put the Boys & Girls Club at the center of our events. Whether it is inviting the people that you serve to come and speak about their experiences, playing a video during the program that showcases the impact you make or actually hosting it at your organization, this is your chance to show the true difference you are making to a large group of potential supporters. Like I said before, people love being a part of something that helps others and events are one of the easiest ways to get people involved.
To learn how to get involved with the great work of the Boys & Girls Club of Oklahoma County, stop by their website.