Each day, program providers serve an integral role in the functioning of our AfterZone system. They come from many pockets of the Providence community and represent a wide array of talent and expertise in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math), sports, and the arts. Together, they form a robust network of committed and caring adults who are working every day to impact the lives of city youth. As a part of the PASA network, program providers also have access to year-round professional development and training opportunities.
Starting the AfterZone Day
Program providers start the AfterZone day 20 minutes prior to when youth arrive for AfterZone. After they have checked in with site coordinators and set up their space, the young people begin to arrive in the cafeteria– the central gathering space for all AfterZone youth. Program providers greet the youth, encourage them to sign in, and aid in the transition from the school day to AfterZone. As the young people eat their hot meals, which PASA offers them daily, program providers sit at their tables and engage with them.
Leading Hands-On Learning and Fun
After hot meals, program providers and youth disperse for the program day’s learning and exploration. Some program providers lead instruction at the schools, while others go somewhere in the community with the young people, such as to Down City Design’s design studio on the West Side or Chef Walter’s Cooking School in Federal Hill. As young people are diving into their interests, program providers are also infusing positive youth development approaches into their instruction so that youth are simultaneously cultivating essential skills like problem solving and teamwork.
Recruitment and End of Session Celebrations
Prior to each 6-10 week session, program providers go into the schools to encourage youth to sign up for the AfterZone. Following each session, program providers participate in a celebration of youth progress during their 6-10 weeks of programming. Often, there are projects on display and performances like hip hop dance routines or a brief music concert.