About The Center
In May of 2007, the Braintree Rotary Club founded the Braintree Community Youth Center to provide a fun and safe place for Braintree's youth to hang out and enjoy. A board dedicated officers and directors was formed and worked tirelessly to establish and now endeavor to maintain a safe, supervised and fun location for middle school and high school aged youths. Supported by a cadre of committed and caring volunteers, the youth center is manned an open every Friday and Saturday evenings. The Town of Braintree graciously provides the center with a rent-free building.
Whether youths are into video games, sports, arts, and crafts or board games, there is always something to do and friends to share your interest. The center currently has two pool tables, a foose-ball table, two air hockey games, ping pong, and a growing collection of video games. During good weather, outdoor space is made available for basketball games, keep-away, and dodge ball.
On any given night, the center may have between 30 to 85 members present, so we are always looking for additional volunteers to assist in supervising the youths in attendance. All of our volunteers are CORI cleared as part of the screening process. To find out more about how to get involved, please click here.
To provide a fun and safe place for Braintree youth to learn social interaction skills and friendly competition. We seek to offer an open meeting and gathering place free of discrimination, based upon race, ethnicity, religion, or sexual orientation.
We do not condone violence, and we encourage alternative solutions and conclusions as a means to resolve problems that may occur.
Dedication - "Doc's Place"
Recently, the Braintree Community Youth Center unveiled signs, honoring the late Dr. John F. McGee, the longtime and well-loved Braintree optometrist. The youth center has now been dubbed “Doc’s Place."
The youth center has been one of the beneficiaries of Dr. McGee’s charitable foundation, having received $7,000 in 2011, $7,000 in 2012, $10,000 in 2013, and a whopping $75,000 in 2014—a total of $99,000!
Dr. John F. McGee, a World War II Vet, private pilot, and philanthropist came to Braintree in the early 1950s as a young Optometrist, setting out to start his optometric practice. He was an only child and had been brought up in Clinton MA. “Doc”, as he later came to be known by his friends and patients, arrived with nothing but an education and a desire to build a new life. It wasn’t easy in the beginning, not knowing the surroundings or the people. After renting a place in South Braintree Square, he quickly familiarized himself with the businesses that would be his neighbors. When starting out, he had little money and learned to barter dinner in return for cleaning the windows in a local restaurant. He rented a room where the landlord prepared him toast and coffee in the morning as part of his lodging.
Soon thereafter, he built a clientele and was well-respected by those who knew him in the community. When chatting with his newfound friends, “Doc” would reminisce about how, along the path of his life, so many people had helped him. A high school professor organized a private tutor and made sure he came daily to meet with John so that he would pass a particular class and be able to go on to college. One of his Sergeants in the Army stepped in just before he was to be shipped overseas, which resulted in his being put in charge of a hospital down South. Whenever he least expected it or needed assistance in his life, it seemed that there was always someone there to help him pick up the pieces or move forward despite potential setbacks. “Doc” never forgot the kindness of mankind and, in turn, felt the desire to give back and help others.
“Doc” dabbled in the stock market. He schooled himself in its workings. After gambling on a local leasing company, he hit pay-dirt when it split with Pepsi Cola.
Believing that there were local people, who were finding themselves in the situation he had been in for so many years, “Doc” was convinced that a gift from him could potentially have a life-changing effect on those persons. He would help when he could, surprising people along the way by his good deeds. He had an uncanny way about him that allowed him to always see the good in people—and their potential. When “Doc” became ill, he put a trust together to keep his legacy alive and to continue to help where it was needed most. He chose to contribute to many local charities in the town he had loved and where he had settled: Braintree. He knew he could make a mark and “pay it forward”, but it didn’t stop there. He knew other charities were also in need of support. Before his death, he worked with his trustees and close friends and put together a list of charitable organizations, which reach near and far. Now, some seven years down the road, those charities are still benefitting from his legacy.