This program provides free meals and snacks to over 200 children daily. 60% of our members live in poverty and do not have food available in their home. After school, without the Club many would go home to an empty house with no adult supervision and return to school the next day without being prepared. Children participate in educational programs designed for them to keep pace in school and even excel. The Reading Program improves reading ability, comprehension and vocabulary.
The challenges we experience are: children not being prepared for classroom activities, a desire to drop out of school, frustration in the child, decrease in learning ability, becoming destruptive, angry and inconsiderate, childhood hunger, low self esteem, increase in childhood illness in some cases due to lack of food in the home and no supervision in the home during the after school hours until an adult arrives in the evening.
The After School Program provides the necessary tools to complete their homework for the next school day. They are prepared and eager to participte in the classroom. Computers are available to them. They are encouraged by trained staff to think about their future with a goal. The children are also fed in the After School Program. The children will go home having eaten their evening meal provided by the Club. A hungry child cannot concentrate and has no desire to succeed.
By becoming educated as a child, he/she can look forward to becoming an adult who is gainfully employed with a promising future. Their outlook of reaching their full potential as a productive, caring responsible citizen has been solidified. The community will have a work force available to them as these children complete their education. The Food Program will have educated them to eat the proper nutritious foods to become a healthy individual with a desire to give back to the community.