The New York Life Foundation, in partnership with the Afterschool Alliance, has announced grants totaling $1.35 million in support of programs focused on serving middle-school youth during out-of-school time (OST) hours.
As part of the Aim High initiative, twenty-six programs were awarded initial grants, while sixteen will receive continuing grants. Launched in 2017, Aim High helps eighth-graders reach the ninth grade on time and prepared for high school by providing students with additional learning time, which studies have shown improves academic achievement, attendance, and engagement.
Ten first-year recipients were awarded grants of $15,000 in support of professional development activities for OST staff; they include Hands in For Youth in West Milford, New Jersey; Sunnyside Community Services in Sunnyside, New York; and Developing K.I.D.S. in Detroit. Eight other organizations will receive $50,000 over two years; they include the Montana Conservation Corps in Bozeman; Apex for Youth in New York City; and Adult Friends for Youth in Honolulu. And eight organizations were awarded two-year grants of $100,000; they include Girls Inc. of Greater Los Angeles; Breakthrough Central Texas in Austin; and Cypress Hills Development Corporation in Brooklyn, New York.
"Middle school is a vulnerable time period for students, yet in the field of extended learning time, only a small percentage of programs target middle school students, leaving many without a safe, productive, and enriching place to go after school," said the foundation's senior program officer, Marlyn Torres. "The New York Life Foundation is working to fill this gap by funding OST programs that help children develop social, emotional, and academic skills, which are essential for the transition to high school."
For a complete list of recipients, see the New York Life Foundation website.