Boys & Girls Club members of Gregory School came together on October 18 to celebrate the annual “Lights On Afterschool” event with a visit from Congressmen Rush Holt. The gathering was one of 7,500 such events across the nation emphasizing the importance of keeping the lights on and the doors open for afterschool programs.
“We are proud to be part of a national rally to help increase awareness of the importance of funding for after-school programs in New Jersey and across the country,” said David Anderson, Executive Director of the Boys & Girls Club of Trenton. “Our students need a positive and enriching place to go after school and we want to make sure that continues,” he continued.
Special guest Congressman Rush Holt took the opportunity to visit the Boys & Girls Club afterschool program and spend time with students as they colored artwork in the form of light bulbs that Holt would judge later in the day.
“Lights On Afterschool” celebrates the skills our Club members learn in our afterschool program each day,” said Nicole Sage, Program Director, Gregory School. “It is a powerful reminder that afterschool programs keep children safe, inspire them to learn, and relieve working parents of worries about how their children will spend their afternoons.”
Following the tour, Congressman Rush Holt took a moment to speak to Boys & Girls Club staff and students about the importance of after-school programs before judging the artwork and announcing the winners.
LIGHTS ON AFTERSCHOOL- Reggie Coleman (L), associate executive director, Boys & Girls Club, Nicole Sage, Program Director, Gregory School, and Congressman Rush Holt, pose for a photo with four Boys & Girls Club members at Gregory School who were awarded prizes in honor of their artwork chosen by Congressman Rush Holt. The event marked the celebration of “Lights On Afterschool” a national event organized by the Afterschool Alliance to rally for afterschool support. View More Photos
“I’m glad that you all have a place like the Boys & Girls Club to go to every day after school,” said Holt to the Boys & Girls Club members. “You are in a safe place where you can learn and grow while also having fun. Having a program like the Boys & Girls Club available to you daily will provide all of you with an opportunity at successful futures.”
The Boys & Girls Club of Trenton & Mercer County has been providing children and youths, with educational, career, and recreational activities though after-school, weekend, and summer programs since 1937. Today, the Club provides programs and services to 2,300 children and young adults in its Trenton facility at 212 Centre Street and 17 neighborhood-based locations. Four of these locations are designated as 21st Century Community Learning Centers by the U.S. Department of Education.
More information on the Afterschool Alliance and Lights On Afterschool is available at www.afterschoolalliance.org.