Community Support Needed
For After-School Programs For Youth
Actor and children’s activist Arnold Schwarzenegger will be the honorary
chair of the third annual Lights On Afterschool! on Thursday, October 10th.
On that day, parents, students, educators, neighbors, community leaders
and policy makers across the country will come together to rally for the
after-school programs that keep kids safe and healthy, improve academic
achievement and help working families.
“Lights On Afterschool! is a perfect opportunity for Americans to show
their support for after-school programs,” Schwarzenegger said. “On
October 10th, at 5,000 events across the country, Americans will send the
message that families all over the nation need quality after-school programs.
I am proud to serve as National Chair of this important event. Lights
On Afterschool! is about keeping our kids safe and helping them succeed
in school and in life.”
Dozens of organizations that represent the interests of children are
participating in Lights On Afterschool! Partners include America’s
Promise; the American Federation of Teachers; Reading is Fundamental; the
National Association of Counties; the Council of Chief School Officers;
the National Recreation and Park Association; and leading after-school
providers including Boys & Girls Clubs of America, 4-H, Junior Achievement
and YMCA of the USA. The Boys & Girls Clubs of Manhattan will
participate on the local level.
The Afterschool Alliance is a nonprofit public awareness and advocacy
organization supported by a group of public, private, and nonprofit entities
dedicated to ensuring that all children and youth have access to after-school
programs by 2010. The Alliance is proud to count among its founding
partners the C.S. Mott Foundation, U.S. Department of Education, JCPenney
Afterschool, Open Society Institute/The After-School Corporation, the Entertainment
Industry Foundation and the Creative Artists Agency Foundation. JCPenney
Afterschool is the national presenting sponsor of Lights On Afterschool!
JCPenney Afterschool is committed to providing children with high-quality,
affordable after-school programs to help them reach their full potential.
JCPenney Afterschool is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization providing financial
and volunteer support to five of America’s leading after-school advocates
- the YMCA of the USA, the Boys & Girls Clubs of America, 4-H, Junior
Achievement and the Afterschool Alliance. This support helps provide
safe, fun and educational after-school programs and raises awareness of
the need for more such programs across the country.
“Lights On Afterschool! celebrates the wonderful work being done in
our after-school programs,” said J.J. McCowan, JCPenney Afterschool Coach.
“It reminds us of the great services these programs provide - keeping our
children safe, helping them learn, and relieving working parents of worries
about their children’s afternoons.”
“Unfortunately, too many kids are still home alone in the afternoons,
or out on the streets where they can become involved in crime. And to make
matters worse, funding shortages are forcing programs to cut back instead
of increasing the number of youth served,” said Barb Allen, Executive Director,
Boys & Girls Clubs of Manhattan.
Lights On Afterschool! is a nationwide event to recognize the critical
importance of quality after-school programs in the lives of children, their
families and their communities. It is a project of the Afterschool Alliance
and National Presenting Sponsor JCPenney Afterschool. The Boys &
Girls Clubs of Manhattan will celebrate Lights On Afterschool! on Thursday,
October 10th during their regular after-school programs at 305 S. Fourth
Street and Northview Elementary School. Everyone in the community
is invited to stop by either location between 3:30 and 5:30 p.m. to learn
more about our positive programs for youth. More information on the
Alliance and Lights On Afterschool! is available at www.afterschoolalliance.org.