03/18/2010 05:12 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

After-School Program Builds Community For Homeless Kids And Families

At PS 636 in Brooklyn, one in five kids are homeless. But one after-school program, reports, is helping almost every kid at this school feel at home. While other after-school programs in the area have been cut from lack of funding, the year-old, mostly grant-funded program is transforming the children's academics, attitudes, and the community around them.
Fist-fights in the halls on campus have stopped and test scores are rising. Parents are also using the school as a resource and support system. All at a cost of $1,700 per student per year through the federal grant from The After-School Corporation.

"This is the best thing that could have happened to us," said Lakisha Samuels, whose third-grade daughter, Jolissann, and first- and fifth-grade sons, Kevin and Ludlow, attend the school.

The After-School Corporation, a leading New York intermediary, has organized an advocacy program to create and maintain more programs like the one at PS 636. Join their After-School Action Network and you can receive regular updates on after-school program issues. They also make it super-easy to contact your local officials about after-school and education issues that concern you.