September 26, 2019 by HCDE-Texas
Afterschool in Houston this school year receives a $770,000 funding infusion through City Connections, monies from the city of Houston. The program is administered by the Center for Afterschool, Summer and Environment for Kids, or CASE for Kids, a division of Harris County Department of Education.
For a sixth consecutive year, families in 11 Houston City Council districts benefit from the city funding. Nonprofit organizations in each of the council districts receive $22,250 from Oct. 14-Dec. 31. The city and CASE for Kids encourage nonprofits like arts organizations, faith-based organizations and civic groups to apply through a request for proposal.
In January, new funding opportunities of $22,250 will be available through a request for proposal in each council district as the new city council is sworn into office. Those afterschool funds will be used from March 9-May 15.
“City Connections gives Houston youth opportunity to grow, develop skills and discover hobbies,” said Lisa Thompson-Caruthers, director of CASE for Kids. “Besides promoting child safety, afterschool supports social and emotional learning. We are grateful for the continued support of afterschool by city of Houston leaders, including the mayor and the council members.”
As an afterschool intermediary, CASE for Kids provides resources, trainings and funding for students in grades pre-k through 12 in afterschool programs in schools, childcare facilities and community centers. As a branch of Harris County Department of Education, the division was founded in 1999 with a goal to keep kids safe, help working families and improve academic achievement.
According to the national nonprofit Afterschool Alliance, more than 15 million students—including approximately 3.7 million middle schoolers—are alone and unsupervised between 3 to 6 p.m., the peak hours for juvenile crime and experimentation with drugs, alcohol, cigarettes and sex.
HCDE Superintendent James Colbert Jr. said CASE for Kids City Connections is critically needed as one or both parents or guardians work in many families, leaving unwatched children vulnerable during out-of-school time.
“We are thankful the city continues to invest in our children and their families, especially as afterschool funding is being cut through other sources,” Colbert said.
To find out about the organizations in each council district that will provide services or to contact CASE for Kids about new opportunities in January 2020, visit www.hcde-texas.org/after-school .