September 17, 2012
Contact: Carol D. Rugg,
Flint-area afterschool program receives
important boost from C.S. Mott Foundation grant
FLINT, Mich. — A program that helps kids use out-of-school time to advance both inside and outside the classroom will again be offered at more than a dozen schools across six Genesee County districts through the support of a $3.1-million grant from the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation to the Genesee Area Focus Fund. The Fund is a supporting organization of the Genesee Regional Chamber of Commerce.
YouthQuest, led by the Regional Chamber, offers afterschool activities and services that promote academic learning, physical fitness, youth leadership, volunteerism, and the exploration of new interests and skills in such areas as science and the arts.
The program, which served nearly 2,800 area elementary and middle school students in 2011-12, is kicking off the new academic year at 15 sites this month.
|Video By: DUANE M. ELLING
In addition to reinforcing the learning that takes place during the regular school day, programs like YouthQuest offer students many opportunities to cultivate and expand their interests and skills, said William S. White, president and CEO of the Mott Foundation.
“Our years of work in the field of afterschool and extended learning have reinforced our belief that the hours between 3 and 6 p.m. are crucial for children,” said White. “Afterschool programs can provide an environment where students have new and different experiences that help to boost their confidence, improve their academic achievement and invigorate their interest in learning.”
Mott support for YouthQuest and Bridges to the Future, as the program was known when it was launched in 1998, has totaled $27 million since 2000.
The Foundation’s commitment to its hometown is further reflected in the more than $758 million that it has invested in the greater Flint area over the past 84 years — $24 million in 2011 alone. That funding has included support for YouthQuest and other programs serving children and youth; economic and downtown development; job training; public safety; and emergency and family services.
Research suggests that regular participation in quality out-of-school programs like YouthQuest can lead to better grades, lower rates of truancy, more engagement in school, attainment of higher levels of achievement in college and a reduction in delinquency and contact with the police.
Advocates also note that for many working parents and guardians, afterschool programs help ensure their children are in a positive environment during the hours after school.
Tim Herman, CEO of the Regional Chamber, notes that the YouthQuest approach also helps participants “develop such important employment skills as problem-solving, critical and creative thinking, and healthy decision-making.”
“These are attributes that employers tell us are important to their companies’ competitiveness and long-term survival, and YouthQuest gives students a jumpstart in their development,” said Herman.
YouthQuest will be offered at the following schools during the 2012-13 academic year:
Carman-Ainsworth Community Schools
- Dye Elementary
- Randels Elementary
- Rankin Elementary
- Carman-Ainsworth Middle School
Flint Community Schools
- Brownell Elementary
- Freeman Elementary
- Neithercut Elementary
- Potter Elementary
- Washington Elementary
International Academy of Flint Schools
- Elementary and middle school programs
Lakeville Community Schools
Mt. Morris Consolidated Schools
- Montague Elementary
- Moore Elementary
Montrose Community Schools
- Carter Elementary School
- Kuehn-Haven Middle School
Information about YouthQuest and applications for enrollment are available online at the YouthQuest afterschool program Web site or by calling 810.422.5904.
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