CLEVELAND — Philanthropist Mackenzie Scott has made a $6.8 million donation to the Boys & Girls Clubs of Northeast Ohio (BGCNEO), a gift representatives of the club say will kickstart the organization’s plan to double the number of children it serves in the area.
BGCNEO said the gift was unexpected and unsolicited. It’s a welcomed donation that will help the organization add more clubs and serve 20,000 kids by 2025.
Jeff Scott, the organization’s CEO and unrelated to the donor, called the donation “an amazingly generous gift to our kids.”
He said the need to expand the Boys & Girls Club footprint is critical as the clubs provide after school programming to thousands of children in Northeast Ohio, a region with one of the nation’s highest rates of child poverty.
Jeff Scott said the $6.8 million gift wasn’t just unusual in its size but also because the organization never reached out to Mackenzie Scott asking for money. He said her team contacted him about the work the clubs do to help children and working families.
“We are so thankful,” Jeff Scott said, who was asked follow-up questions by her team before the organization was awarded the gift.
The Boys & Girls Club serves kids ages 6-18 after school. There are 40 club sites and about 10,000 members in Cuyahoga, Summit, Lorain and Erie counties. BGCNEO provides free afterschool care for families, and the clubs provide a safe place for kids during the most dangerous time for them – the hours right after school.
Mackenzie Scott’s gift to the BGCNEO is part of a larger $281 million donation to the Boys & Girls Clubs of America, according to Forbes.
The novelist and ex-wife of Amazon founder Jeff Bezos has a net worth of about $47 billion and has given away approximately 19% of that.
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