West Phila. Partnership Leading The Way For Out-of-School Activity Programs

"Philadelphia officials are hoping to expand a new model for providing after-school and summer activities for youth. It’s not just that the city’s Recreation Department budget has been cut to the bone, with just 1½ full-time staff member per recreation center. Deputy mayor Mike DiBerardinis says there’s a new appreciation for how important it is to get kids into activities. “The data about out-of-school time is, if you can give kids high-quality and diverse opportunities, particularly in the middle school years, it’s a big developmental tool. They feel more connected to the neighborhood, they’re safer, they tend to do a little better in school.”