‘I never imagined doing so much’

Jordan Shelton

Jordan Shelton remembers being nervous when she and her cousins first walked into the East Cleveland Boys & Girls Club. Then she heard the voice of Will Price, assistant director of the club.

“He started calling people by name – we were kind of surprised,” Jordan says.

They discovered the club was more than just a place to hang out after school. It was a place where people not only knew your name but took the time to know what might interest you. And for Jordan, that has meant everything from playing flag football to keeping the books as treasurer of Teen Enterprise, which sells chips, candy, cookies, doughnuts and other items at the club store.

Jordan, 12, has become a leader at the club. The Apex Academy seventh-grader is co-editor of the club newspaper – “It is a lot of responsibility, but it’s fun,” she says – and participates in several other programs, including Brain Gain, a science challenge, Ohio Adventures, which allows members to explore local sites of interest, and a running club that was started over the summer.

At school, she is a member of student council and the cheerleading squad.

“At first, I never imagined doing so much,” Jordan says. “At the club, we can have fun and be part of something. There are so many opportunities. I always have something to do.”