For children who live in neighborhoods with the highest rates of poverty, an after-school program or summer camp can mean safety and security.
The Children’s Trust, which has supported local after-school and summer programs in Miami-Dade County since 2003, will continue supporting these community organizations for the next three years with a $90 million investment.
“These students would otherwise be out on the street alone or home alone. Instead, they have the wonderful opportunity to experience many great activities that keep them learning during the summer time. Before Children’s Trust, they weren’t available to families who couldn’t pay,” said Emily Cardenas, senior communications manager at the Children’s Trust.
Over the next three years, 206 locations will receive funding in installments of $29.7 million per year. Among these organizations is the Thomas Armour Youth Ballet, which has been supported by the Children’s Trust for the past three years.
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With the Children’s Trust’s support, the Thomas Armour Youth Ballet has been able to offer free classical ballet lessons in four locations across Miami-Dade.
“Children from every economic background can be exposed to the arts,” said Ruth Wiesen, executive director of the Thomas Armour Youth Ballet.
With the funding for the next three years, the organization will be able to add an hour of literacy to its after-school programs, which will include hiring teachers to help children who are struggling in any area and to continue to push children who are excelling.
“The trust has a vision to help every child and family in the community,” Wiesen said.
The Children’s Trust will also fund parenting, youth enrichment, early childhood development, school health and literacy programs for the next three years for a total of $190 million in community investments.
“The most important thing about these grants is that they make summer school and after school programs widely available to children across Miami-Dade,” Cardenas said.