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BP America Joins East Chicago Boys & Girls Club’s 100 Year Celebration

CHICAGO CRUSADER — As excitement is building for the 100 Year Celebration of the Katherine House, and the renovation of the East Chicago Katherine House Boys & Girls Club, BP America pledged their commitment

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Boys & Girls Club of Greater Northwest Indiana accepts a $20,000 gift from BP America for the East Chicago Katherine House Club’s Capital Initiative. On hand to provide the gift are (from left to right): East Chicago Mayor Copeland; Don Porter, Whiting BP Refinery Manager; and Ryan Smiley, President and CEO of Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Northwest Indiana.
By The Chicago Crusader

As excitement is building for the 100 Year Celebration of the Katherine House, and the renovation of the East Chicago Katherine House Boys & Girls Club, BP America pledged their commitment in helping Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Northwest Indiana build GREAT Futures of East Chicago youth through a $20,000 gift.

“As I have stated before, the East Chicago community is very generous,” said Ryan Smiley, president and CEO of Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Northwest Indiana. “People, and companies like BP America, understand the very importance of our East Chicago Club, and the unbelievable opportunities this Club provides to youth in their out-of-school-time. BP America’s gift is helping us to renovate and enhance the East Chicago Katherine House Club because the youth of East Chicago deserve the best.”

BP America’s $20,000 gift is being used as part of a match from an anonymous donor to support this $1.25 million effort.

“BP is proud to be part of this important capital project,” said Don Porter, BP Whiting refinery manager. “BP is committed to supporting our communities and investing in projects that work toward strengthening our local Northwest Indiana area. The Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Northwest Indiana’s mission to inspire youth to reach their full potential is something BP strongly supports. Community organizations, schools, parents and businesses must continue to work together to inspire the next generation of innovators and creators.”

The Katherine House, as it was known, has a rich place in East Chicago’s history. Built in 1919 by the local faith-based community, its purpose was to serve as a youth center. Fast forward to 1973. As the Boys & Girls Club organization was growing throughout Lake and Porter Counties, the East Chicago Club became the third Club added to the Boys & Girls Clubs family. Lowell Robertson, founder of the East Chicago Club, worked with the Katherine House to merge into the now present East Chicago Katherine House Boys & Girls Club. As a contingent of the merger, girls were accepted as members. In 1992, the current East Chicago Katherine House Boys & Girls Club was built. The purpose of serving youth has never changed.

About BP America:

BP is a global producer of oil and gas with operations in over 70 countries. BP has a larger economic footprint in the U.S. than in any other nation, and it has invested more than $100 billion here since 2005. BP employs about 14,000 people across the U.S. and supports more than 111,000 additional jobs through all its business activities.

For more information on BP in America, visit www.bp.com/us.

This article originally appeared in the Chicago Crusader

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