Our focus is to provide a safe and enriching environment for students in grades 5-12 in our after school program and in the summer months.
Warehouse programs include:
- After School program for youth in grades 5-12 (including “Life Lessons” which help the students to acquire community building assets for now and for their future) Open during the school year M-F from 3:00-6:00pm. The Warehouse provides at no cost to students, a gym, computer lab, game room (WII, X-box360 & Playstation3), full kitchen, snacks, board games, air hockey, foosball, ping pong, crafts & assistance with homework. Transportation is also provided from the school to The Warehouse free of charge.
- Occasional special programing for youth in grades 5-12 during both the school year and the summer months.
- Other youth special programs include movie nights, game nights, community invited to Pizza Parties after all home Friday sports events, Block Party for the whole community, and all student members families are invited to a Christmas party.
- Adult Open Gym weekly.
As a Community Center, many community groups, individuals and businesses also use The Warehouse for various activities on a donation basis.
As funding permits, we will continue our Summer Program by offering weeks of activities throughout the summer. The activities we are considering are camping, swimming lessons, bike trips, mini golf, horseback riding, and various outdoor adventures. Each day will include at least a snack and on some days a meal. During the summer months we do continue to focus on 5th - 12th grade students but several of our Summer Programing opportunities are open to students as young as five years old which is our swimming lessons.
Here are the stats:
- Our intention is to provide a safe, encouraging, and enriching environment for youth in grades 5 - 12 to hang out after-school and in the summer.
- Pine River is a rural community that is in an economically depressed county.
- Eighteen percent (18%) of the children in Cass County live below the poverty line and receive food support.
- In the Pine River-Backus school district, 65% of the students qualify for free or reduced price lunches.
- It has been previously stated by the Pine River-Backus Violence Prevention Task Force that the Pine River area has had more reported incidents of domestic issues than any other area of this county.
- There is also a correspondingly high rate of substance abuse found in our community. Our youth are often hurting and in need of a “safe” place to go. They also need positive, healthy, caring people in their lives who can give them additional help besides what they get from home or school.
The After-School Program is an answer to this need. We have volunteers, a Manager, and part time After-School Program Coordinator and 4 part time interns who are all building into the lives of our youth. Life skills, healthy values, community connections, and so much more are given through meaningful relationships.
The youth we see are often looking for meaning and purpose in life. They want to connect but often don’t know how. We give them the “how” they are looking for and it works. We’ve also had the pleasure of seeing groups from Blackduck, Akeley, Crosslake, Pequot Lakes, Aitken and Brainerd examine our program as a model while developing their youth programs.
Our program is growing. We started out with as few as 26 students per day. However we have grown to see as many as 115 students per day. What does this mean for us? While we love the growth, our After-School Program accounts for at least 75% of all the expenses for The Warehouse. As our numbers go up so do our expenses and the result is that we need funds in order to keep our doors open.
All donations are tax deductible and go directly to support The Warehouse After-School Program. Even if you can’t give, you might know someone who can. We thank all of you who have supported us in the past and are looking forward to seeing what happens this year. Thank you.