BCPL joins af­ter school pro­gram

The Avenue News - - NEWS - By CHAR­LENE MAYO cmayo@ches­pub.com

Six Bal­ti­more County Pub­lic Li­braries (BCPL) will be par­tic­i­pat­ing in Lights on Af­ter­school, an af­ter-school pro­gram that al­lows mid­dle and high school stu­dents to par­tic­i­pate in ac­tiv­i­ties and hang out af­ter school.

The Rosedale branch li­brary will be one of the six lo­ca­tions host­ing the af­ter-school pro­gram which kicked off on Thurs­day, Oc­to­ber 25.

Stu­dents will be able to par­tic­i­pate in ac­tiv­i­ties like play­ing video games, watch­ing movies, par­tic­i­pat­ing in arts and crafts and STEM (sci­ence, tech­nol­ogy, en­gi­neer­ing and math­e­mat­ics) based ac­tiv­i­ties.

Through a part­ner­ship with the or­ga­ni­za­tion KidzTable, BCPL is able to pro­vide free snacks at all their af­ter­school pro­grams.

This is the first year BCPL have adopted the Lights on Af­ter­school pro­gram, which was started in 2000.

This pro­gram is open to any mid­dle or high schooler and doesn’t re­quire a reg­is­tra­tion.

“Stu­dents just have to show up,” said BCPL com­mu­ni­ca­tions and me­dia re­la­tions rep­re­sen­ta­tive Erica Palmisano.

The Lights on Af­ter­school pro­gram will be avail­able Mon­day through Fri­day, from about 3 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.

“Some kids stay later,” Palmisano said. “They can come one day out of the week or ev­ery day, it’s up to them.”

Ac­cord­ing to Palmisano, Lights on Af­ter­school is a safe place stu­dents can go to feel com­fort­able and to en­gage with other kids and adults.

“There are a lot of kids that go home to empty houses be­cause their par­ents work or they live in a sin­gle fam­ily house­hold,” Palmisano ex­plained, “It’s an­other place where they can go and en­joy them­selves, get help with home­work and make new friends.”

Lights on Af­ter­school, is a na­tional cam­paign, Palmisano ex­plained, “and its just made sense for them to sign on and pro­mote the things they do ev­ery day.”

“The Af­ter­school Al­liance or­ga­nizes Lights On Af­ter­school to draw at­ten­tion to the many ways af­ter­school pro­grams sup­port stu­dents by of­fer­ing them op­por­tu­ni­ties to learn new things and dis­cover new skills. The events send a pow­er­ful mes­sage that mil­lions more kids need qual­ity af­ter­school pro­grams,” states the press re­lease from BCPL.

For more in­for­ma­tion on Lights on Af­ter­school, visit www.af­ter­schoolal­liance. org/loa.cfm.

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