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Boys & Girls Clubs of Chicago

Club Support Center
550 W. Van Buren Street
Suite 350
Chicago, IL 60607

Phone: (312) 235-8000
Fax: (312) 427-4110

Volunteer Spotlight – Marco Poort

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When Marco Poort is not volunteering at the Alcott Club he enjoys cooking, exploring the city, spending time with his wife, who he admits is the better cook. and walking their dog, Willow. Marco is from California and when he got accepted into a University of Illinois Chicago’s PhD program he drove cross country and has settled in nicely over the past year. Back in California Marco had a previous connection to a Boys & Girls Club as his old boss spoke highly of the organization and the impact it has on youth. Upon moving to Chicago, Marco quickly learned about a volunteer opportunity at a neighboring Boys & Girls Club, the Alcott Club, for a math tutor position and given his expertise in electrical engineering he immediately took on the opportunity.

Marco has been an active volunteer at the club for over 6 months and has expanded his involvement beyond just serving as a math tutor. "I got involved with Science Olympiad at the Club, and I was able to help a club member with building a hover craft. Our goal was to make his craft hover run down a course in a certain amount of time while testing different variables and speeds. I helped this club member trouble shoot ways to make his hover craft run more efficiently by sizing the motor and measuring resistance.

"When he solved the problem his reaction was priceless as his eyes lit up and he raved about how cool his craft turned out. I was proud to see that he was so excited, he put a lot of time and effort into building the hover craft. This club member is actually attending UIC in the fall and I was able to provide him with the contact information to an academic advisor so he already has a connection his first day on campus."

"I enjoy working with the youth and supporting them in reaching their potential because you can never be too sure how far you can reach unless you have a helping hand. There are times in my studies when there is a small thing holding me back and through my network of support, including my peers and professors, I find a way to solve the problem and the solution falls into place. I feel like I experience this when teaching and explaining concepts to the youth at the club, they are curious and excited to learn and I can see their light bulb turn on and suddenly they have the information they need to solve the problem."

It is because of dedicated volunteers like Marco Poort that graciously share their time and talents with the organization and club members that enables Boys & Girls Clubs of Chicago to accomplish our mission. We sincerely thank Marco and the hundreds of other volunteers across the organization that serve in a variety of capacities for your service and commitment to enabling all young people, especially those who need us most to reach their full potential as productive, caring and responsible citizens."

 

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