After School Programs Kept Open by Greenwich House
A new After School and Summer Arts Camp program is underway at Greenwich House after a transition of the program from the Children’s Aid Society’s Philip Coltoff Center, which closed in June.
Each week, 70 young New Yorkers delve into fun art projects and museum trips like textile design, photography, drawing and print-making, visiting the Museum of Art and Design and The Met, to name a few. With guidance from expert art teachers and teen counselors in training, kids go far beyond the popsicle stick art of yesteryear. Today, cartooning, graphic drawing and stop-motion animation entertain our youth during hot summer months.
As the Summer Camp season winds down, Greenwich House looks forward to beginning the After School program. Starting on September 10th and running for 12 weeks, the program can accommodate more than 200 children from ages 5 to 17. When the doors open, kids can choose from 20 different arts and education classes, including printmaking, chess, science lab, and architecture and design.
“We’re so grateful that Greenwich House recognized the value of this program and was able to prevent it from closing. Now kids in the community can continue learning and exploring their artistic side,” said Antonia Smith, program director. “Arts budgets have been on the chopping block in recent years, and these programs fill a growing gap in the curriculum for many New York City students,” she continued.
According to a 2009 Report by the Center for Arts Education, “spending on arts supplies and visits by cultural institutions has dropped drastically at city schools over the last three years, even as overall education spending has grown. While education spending increased by about 13 percent between 2006 and 2009, funding for arts supplies, musical instruments and other equipment fell by 63 percent.”
The administration at Greenwich House felt compelled to respond to these dramatic deficits in the city’s public school education to remain true to its mission of providing arts, education, social and health services to the community in order to help all New Yorkers lead more fulfilling lives. These two new programs further enhance Greenwich House’s ability to respond to the needs of New York City kids and teens, as it has done for them and adults alike at Greenwich House Music School and Greenwich House Pottery since 1905 and 1909, respectively.
One returning camper shared, “I am so happy to be here, I love how special the clay classes are and to make new things. It’s really fun doing this with friends that I made when the camp was at Children’s Aid and seeing my old counselor.”
To make the transition a smooth one, most of the former Children’s Aid counselors and teachers have transitioned to Greenwich House along with the programs. “It’s always great to have familiar faces and instructors that I know and trust taking care of my kids,” one parent shared. She added, “We are so happy that Greenwich House came along, otherwise I would have been hard pressed to find a program that is just right for my two girls.” Collectively, the teachers have more than 40 years experience in arts education.
For the 2012 fall semester, Greenwich House anticipates welcoming some 200 kids to 20 different classes. The program includes escort service from four neighborhood schools, and provides homework help before the elected courses begin. In addition to art classes, Greenwich House will offer basketball, karate, soccer and yoga. To learn more about the programs or how to register, check out the website at http://greenwichhouse.org/afterschool.