Now in our 9th year the Catskill After-School Program (Catskill Kids Club) continues to provide youth grades K-5 with programs aimed to promote socialization, academic stability and the ability to try new and fun activities. There are no referrals needed to enter the program. Its main goal is to provide positive mental health to both parents/guardians and the children who attend, providing a trusted place, with trusted staff doing activities that engage as well as allow them to be around peers and not sitting home alone or with a babysitter.
Over the 9 years we have grown tremendously; staff is consistently helping evolve and improve the many day to day aspects of the program. We have added Aikido this year for example, which has really been a hit with our older participants. We have also been blessed this year with a wonderful Theatre Program and a teacher who has made a very impressive commitment to the program. Yoga continues to be a shining light in our program, the kids love it and the instructor is top notch.
By giving parents the opportunity for their children to participate in these activities, without the burden of payment and commitment, we are able to package these great activities provided by professional, community based businesses and grant them an opportunity to experience something that they may not, under any other circumstances, have had.
The program has become quite the staple in the Catskill School District and we are hoping that it can continue to run for years to come. We are, however at a period of time where such programs are experiencing funding cuts or are even being eliminated completely. Please know that these After-School Programs are super important to families, youth, school districts and communities as a whole.
Submitted by, Mike Hawksby