SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – The curtain came down Friday on a summer youth program under the Black Men of Greater Springfield organization. For the past six weeks counselors from the Black Men of Greater Springfield have nurtured more than 30 boys aged 8 through 14 at the W.E.B Dubois summer program.

Mayor Domenic Sarno joined the festivities in the Church of the Acres where the children and their mentors had lunch together and looked back on a summer of personal progress.

“Children, they need to come together. They need a good experience, and know that there are people out there that really care about them. We want these kids to be the best kids that they can be,” said program counselor Amarri Cuke.

Mayor Domenic Sarno, a longtime supporter of initiatives from the Black Men of Greater Springfield, praised them during this goodbye gathering.

“They continue this tradition to help our young men to excel, not only in the classroom. It’s just a fantastic program, it builds respect, builds your opportunity. I can’t say enough about the Black Men of Greater Springfield,” Mayor Sarno told 22News.

A strategically important six week summer program, according to Black Men of Greater Springfield President William Zachery, who pointed up all the negative effects from the pandemic interfering with positive opportunities for Black young people, making this just concluded summer program so meaningful.