Over 200,000 Minnesota kids are on their own after school. We are working to change that.
Currently 220,000 Minnesota kids are left home alone after school each day and less than half of children age 6-11 get the recommended 60 minutes of physical activity recommended to stay healthy. The after school hours are crucial times for kids to develop good habits and to avoid bad choices. Statistics show that the hours between 3 and 6 p.m. are the peak hours for juvenile crime and experimentation with drugs, alcohol, cigarettes and sex. Unfortunately, there is a lack of affordable sport and fitness related after school programs in our communities where they can learn to make healthier choices. In fact, for every child that participates in an after school program, two are waiting to get in.
Statistics also show that after school programs produce multiple benefits for youth, including improvements in children's personal, social and academic skills, as well as their self-esteem. (afterschoolalliance.org). In 2009, the AKA After School program was developed to keep kids active during after school hours. We use sport as a vehicle to teach kids life lessons such as teamwork, sportsmanship, problem solving and discipline. AKASPORT brings the added benefit of keeping kids active for the recommended 60 minutes a day to reduce the risks of obesity related illnesses. We design and administer a sport skills and games curriculum for Elementary and Middle School students, bring the equipment and train our staff to make these programs educational, enriching, and a ton of fun!
In the past eight years we have served over 2000 kids and currently operate in three large Minnesota school districts: Minneapolis, Anoka-Hennepin and Spring Lake Park. Our current project is working to expand our after school programs over the next year including increasing the number of kids served and number of schools we operate in. We want to ensure that every child has a safe and fun place to play, learn and grow after school.
Expanding the AKA After School Program is the solution to the lack of affordable sport based programs in our communities. We bring active programs right to the students at their schools eliminating the need for transportation. We partner with the districts to identify their specific needs including financial challenges for students who would benefit from our programs as many times the kids and families that need us the most are those facing economic challenges. We have a vision that every child will have a safe and active program to participate in everyday after school. With your support, we can achieve this vision.
For every $100 donated to the After School Program Expansion, you are supporting over 7 hours of high impact programming. For one school, those hours affect up to 20 unique kids who could otherwise be left alone and potentially engage in negative behaviors. Instead they are being active and gaining the mentorship from encouraging coaches that they so desperately need.
We hope you will
support AKA by making a tax-deductible donation during this Give to the Max Day
so we can bring our programs to even more kids and families in need.