Thursday, October 26th is Lights On Afterschool Day!
Let’s throw out some numbers. 14 million… 40,000… 3-6…
14 million is the number of school age children in America who go home alone after school each day, according to afterschoolalliance.org. 40,000 of those children are kindergartners. 3-6pm are the peak hours for juvenile crime and experimentation with drugs, alcohol, and cigarettes. It is also the average program time for afterschool programs across America.
Thursday, October 26th is Lights On Afterschool Day, where events around the importance of quality out of school time programming will be celebrated across the country, Indianapolis included. The YMCA of Greater Indianapolis is the largest provider of before and after school programs across the Indianapolis area, and we want to make our voice heard! Out of school time programming is important and needed for the youth in our community!
Currently, 6.5 million youth attend afterschool programming across the country. However, an additional 15 million would participate if a quality program were available in their community. In addition to helping lower crime rates, quality afterschool programs have been proven to increase test scores and help develop social and emotional skills within participants. At the YMCA, homework assistance and an afternoon snack/meal is offered to every program participant.
You can help support afterschool programs in your community by visiting afterschoolalliance.org to find an event taking place near you. Here in Indy, we’re going big! In addition to family events taking place across the city, we will be lighting up the IPL building at the Soldiers and Sailors Monument on the circle to celebrate and shine a light on afterschool programs. Click HERE to learn more.