The Boys & Girls Club of Metro Queens received a big donation from one of its neighbors last week as the organization prepares to welcome the public into its new expanded space.
The organization was presented with a $25,000 check from Resorts World Casino New York City last Wednesday.
The money will go toward completion of the long-awaited $10 million expansion of the center at 110-04 Atlantic Ave. in Richmond Hill that has been under construction since 2011.
The new space, which doubles the size of the center to 35,000 square feet, will make room available for new administrative offices, a full-size gym, a teen center, pre-teen center, educational center, technology center and fitness center.
The Boys & Girls Club, which serves around 1,200 children and teenagers — often from poor and single-family homes — from all over South Queens, Jamaica, Glendale, and East Brooklyn, has been vigorously working to raise the money needed to complete the project.
David Kupecky, the center’s program director, said having companies donate money to help programs such as the Boys & Girls Club is especially important because although they get funding from the city, it is often not enough to cover all expenses.
“It’s businesses like [Resorts World] that help keep the business open until 9 o’clock,” Kupecky said.
The money will also go to purchasing new equipment and other items used by children at the center, which serves up to 250 youths a day.
The new teen center will offer two classrooms and a caf? donated by the New York Mets, where students can learn how to make healthy snacks. There will also be a driving simulation room where the teens will learn the importance of safe driving and the distractions that can happen while behind the wheel.
A new mezzanine is also being built to overlook the high school-style gym, which is still under construction.
The official grand opening of the expansion is set for Aug. 19, although it actually began welcoming young people on July 1 for its summer camp session.
The club’s administrative staff is in the process of moving into its new office location, Kupecky said.