Farid Amirfarzaneh could be content to spend the summer just concentrating on his job as manager of McDonald's at Magic Mountain. But the longtime member of the Boys & Girls Club of Santa Clarita says he would miss coaching and refereeing basketball games at his "home away from home."
"Over my 10 years at the club, I've looked up to many of the older kids," said Amirfarzaneh, 18. "Now I'm proud to be a role model."
So the Hart High School senior will spend his free time at the club, where the younger members have good reason to look up to him.
A member and past treasurer of the Keystone Club--the teen leadership arm of the Boys & Girls Club that performs community service--Amirfarzaneh and fellow club members raise money for trips and help out at social events.
Keystone Club members have also canvassed local businesses for summer job opportunities for Santa Clarita teens.
Membership at the Boys & Girls Club--which costs $12 a year--includes year-round transportation from local schools to the facility. Once there, kids can seek help from tutors in the computer lab, play table tennis in the game room, take up a game of basketball or volleyball in the gym or relax with an art project.
Amirfarzaneh hopes to squeeze in time for one of the club's summer field trips to a museum, Dodger game or golf course.
"Our club is a real kids' place," said Judy Belue,(CQ) director of development at the Santa Clarita facility. "They have freedom here. And a safe place to grow up."
Boys & Girls Club of Santa Clarita
* Safety gear for bike riders: $35
* Educational computer software: $25
* Game-room supplies: $15
* Sports awards: $15
* One-year memberships: $12 each