Once a troublemaker, now a role model

Demetrius Blue

When he first set foot in the Saint Luke’s Boys & Girls Club two years ago, Demetrius Blue was an angry young man.  He got into fights.  He didn’t pay attention.  Schoolwork was an iffy proposition.

Demetrius was headed for trouble.

But the help he got at the club — structured homework time, positive social interaction and encouragement to develop his athletic skills — put him on a very different path. Today, Demetrius, 14, is a member of the Torch Club, community service group; he plays on the Saint Luke’s basketball team; he loves art; and he won the lead role in the club play, which was performed at last year’s arts festival at Cuyahoga Community College.  He sees himself in a different light these days.

“I am a leader.  I feel like I’m a role model,” he says.

Demetrius says it is easier for him to get his homework done at the club than at home.  In addition, he gets to hang with friends, play in the gym and learn new things. “The club is really good for me.  I get my schoolwork done, it’s safe and it’s fun,” he says.

Earl Ingram, the assistant club director at Saint Luke’s, says Demetrius “did a complete 180 — he really turned it around.  He is a real success story.  He has become someone the other kids look up to.”