YMCA afterschool effort aids in academic, social needs of youth

Monday, July 29, 2013

Providing youth with opportunities to continue to learn and engage in meaningful activities at the end of the school day can boost their academic success.

To help motivate and inspire kids to learn, the Clay County YMCA is offering an afterschool program to school-aged children throughout Greencastle Community School Cooperation and has announced the opportunity to expand services to North Putnam Community School Cooperation this fall.

The Y's afterschool program combines academics with play and offers a caring and safe environment for youth who would otherwise be left unsupervised.

During the school year, 15.1 million U.S. children are left unsupervised after 3 p.m., according to the Afterschool Alliance, a nonprofit public awareness advocacy organization. In Indiana, 30 percent of children are left alone and responsible for taking care of themselves.

With the start of the new school year, the Clay County YMCA encourages parents to make sure that children are involved in safe, educational experiences after school.

"At the Clay County YMCA we believe all kids deserve the opportunity to discover who they are and what they can achieve," Nicole Fry, executive branch director for the Clay County YMCA said. "In the Y's afterschool programs, youth are cultivating values, skills and relationships and have an extra support system that encourages them to achieve success."

Studies show participation in afterschool programs can help boost school attendance and academic performance and reduces gaps in academic achievement among children from disadvantaged households.

In the Clay County YMCA's afterschool program youth receive organized and free play, physical activities, arts and crafts, homework help, healthy snacks and much more! Financial assistance is available to those in need, to ensure every child and teen has the opportunity to learn and grow at the Y.

Registration forms are available online at www.claycountyymca.org, at our Putnam County Summer Camp located at Ridpath Primary School and can be mail or emailed by request. Families are encouraged to register early to reserve spots.

For more information about the Clay County YMCA's afterschool program, persons may contact Nicole Fry at 812-442-6761, email exec@claycountyymca.org or visit www.claycountyymca.org.

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