A local nonprofit organization is doing its part to keep Starke County students from becoming statistics. Starke County Youth Club Executive Director Irene Szakonyi says nationwide 11.3 million school-aged children are unsupervised after school. In Indiana, only 11 percent are enrolled in an after-school program.
“Without after-school activities those kids are 49 percent more likely to be using drugs and alcohol and 37 percent more likely to become a teen parent,” Szakonyi said.
The Starke County Youth Club provides after-school enrichment programs for elementary and middle school students at Knox, North Judson-San Pierre and Oregon-Davis, where services are also available for high schoolers.
Szakonyi says the Starke County Youth Club also serves as a good launch pad for future success.
“The workforce really needs 21st century skills. This cooperation, this collaboration, responsibility and integrity — those things are taking place at club. All of that happens because we are able to provide this academic core, along with the enrichment and recreation.]”
Offering those services takes money. Starke County Youth Club staff, volunteers, program participants and alumni will be taking over the WKVI airwaves on Friday, May 6th for their annual radiothon. It’s their main fundraiser, but donations are welcome any time. Visit www.thescyc.org for more information.