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Things may look a little different at the Mahomet Area Youth Club — but the goal remains the same.

“MAYC typically has a junior high after-school program, so even though this year is different, the program and students we’re serving isn’t new,” Executive Director Sara Balgoyen said.

When Mahomet-Seymour schools released a re-opening plan that included a hybrid schedule, MAYC knew students in kindergarten through eighth grade would need somewhere to go when not in school. MAYC collaborated with the district to identify where the biggest need would be.

Balgoyen said MAYC has shifted its space to be more of a learning area than usual and created desks and work spaces using tables and plexiglass dividers. It also installed fiber optics to improve internet and purchased headphones and charging stations to make it easier for students to complete their work.

“Thankfully, most of these items have all been funded by local funders like the United Way and the Community Foundation of East Central Illinois,” Balgoyen said.

Currently, MAYC is serving 35 students. The students are broken into two groups that attend two days a week.

“Parents are very grateful for having a safe space to send their students with adult supervision along with learning supports and fun activities,” Balgoyen said. “We have gained several new members and are so excited to meet new students.”

Balgoyen said MAYC is currently accepting monetary donations for the program in addition to paper towels, toilet paper, paper plates, fresh fruit and prepackaged snacks like granola bars.

“We are also open to volunteers to help with monitoring the remote learning,” she said.


The school district spent the weekend deep-cleaning and disinfecting the high school after a student tested positive for COVID-19. In an email to parents, Superintendent Lindsey Hall said the district was working with the Champaign-Urbana Public Health District to identify and monitor individuals who have had contact with the student.


At 10 a.m. Saturday, residents are invited to join a Back the Blue event at Lincoln Trail Elementary in Mahomet, East Side Park in Tolono or Community Park in St. Joseph. At 11 a.m. each group will depart for the parking lots outside at the State Farm Center in Champaign. The rally will include speakers and visits to area police stations to show support.

— Nora Maberry-Daniels

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