Continued learning opportunities in after school programs are essential for youth development

September 15, 2015

 

When the school day ends, youth need opportunities to learn and engage in meaningful activities that positively affect their success in the classroom."

When the school day ends, youth need opportunities to learn and engage in meaningful activities that positively affect their success in the classroom. Unfortunately, one in four U.S. children and 20 percent of children in Illinois are left unsupervised after 3 p.m., according to Afterschool Alliance.

To help youth reach their full potential, the YMCA of Metro Chicago offers after school programming that supports social-emotional, cognitive and physical development. The Y’s afterschool program provides a nurturing environment where all children can build friendships and feel like they belong.

As a leading nonprofit committed to youth development, and a pioneer in after school programs, the Y believes in supporting holistic growth from birth to career.

“Continued learning opportunities can have a positive influence on how well youth perform in school,” said Lyss Welding, YMCA of Metro Chicago measurement coordinator. “After school programs also fill gaps in schools and communities where some recreational opportunities like art, music and physical activity offerings are limited.”

Studies show that participation in afterschool programs helps boost school attendance and academic performance, and reduces academic achievement gaps among children from disadvantaged households. In the Y’s afterschool program, youth receive homework help, healthy snacks, physical activity and other school enrichment activities, and can also explore art, sports and events. Financial assistance is available to those in need, to ensure every child and teen has the opportunity to learn, grow and thrive at the Y.

For more information about after school programs at the Y, visit our website.