Youth programs available for Montgomery kids

Updated: May. 5, 2017 at 4:11 PM CDT
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MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - Community members raised safety concerns for Montgomery students after the shooting death of middle school student Jaquerria Timmons. Some of those concerns surround options that youth can participate in to stay out of trouble.

Below is a list of options for youth participation. Some of these programs are exclusive to the school year, while others are throughout the year.

City Programs:

City officials say the parks and recreation department provides on-going recreational opportunities for children during after-school and weekend activities. These opportunities take place at the community centers across the city.

City Spokesperson Griffith Waller says the after-school programs take place Monday through Friday from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. and weekend activities are 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday.  In addition to after-school programs, the city has several opportunities for team sports throughout the year, like basketball and kickball.

Besides city recreational programming, Waller says the city partners with several community organizations to provide mentoring, tutoring and recreation for youth using the city facilities.

According to the city website, the Montgomery City-County Public Library System offers homework assistance programs after school, Legos and book clubs at all of its branches. Line dancing is also offered for all age groups.

YMCA Programs:

The YMCA of Greater Montgomery also offers several programs for youth in our area.

According to Lara Lewis, the VP of Marketing and Membership with the YMCA, several branches offer after school programs at branches or at the schools themselves. These programs are for grades, Kindergarten through eighth grade in some cases, depending on the school.

The YMCA has also started a new program, the Y Achievers. This program is catered to high school students. According to the YMCA website, the program is an academic achievement/career development initiative purposed to help high school students set and pursue high educational and career goals, resulting in graduation and acceptance to an institution of higher learning.

Reach & Rise is another program offered by the YMCA for ages six through 17, according to Lewis. This program designed to build a better future for youth by helping them reach their full potential through the support of caring adults. Reach & Rise supports you who lack role models and are in communities challenged by poverty, crime, and single-parent households, among other social issues.

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