Potentials of after school programs
With children becoming the primary focus of society, ways and means to ensure their safety and development are being researched. The Government too has pooled in to make a success of such programs. Here are some of the reasons why after school programs have become so popular:
- Preventing Juvenile Delinquency, crime and violent victimization: About 10% of juvenile crimes happen between 3 P.M. - 4 P.M. Children need to be kept safe and out of trouble at such times
- Preventing alcohol, drug and tobacco use. Risk-taking behavior that seeks to establish superiority in a clan is mostly seen in 'latchkey' children. Children in their pre-teens, if they have a meaningful relationship with a mentor, are less likely to indulge in these kinds of destructive behavior
- Decreases appetite for Television: An average child watches about 23 hours of TV per week. When enrolled for some activity, the child utilizes his mental and physical skills to meet challenges.
- Improving academic achievements
- Improving school attendance: More confidence in self and increased interest in school leads to greater attendance in school. A program that helps children with their homework also gives the child a much-needed feeling of self-achievement.
- Improved behavior and inter-personal skills Children who attend after school activities handle conflict better and cooperate more with authority figures.
- Closer family and community ties.