New Jersey School Age Care
The Network for New Jersey’s Afterschool Communities
NJSACC, the Network for New Jersey’s Afterschool Communities will build lasting public support for quality afterschool programs across New Jersey. Led by a public-private partnership and funded by the Charles Stuart Mott Foundation, this initiative will expand public awareness and support; offers guidance for parents, providers and advocates; strengthens relationships with policymakers, funders, practitioners and parents, and shares best practices in the field.
The vision of NJSACC is that:
· All children will have access to affordable, high quality afterschool programs that promote their intellectual, social, emotional and physical development
· All communities will have safe, enriching and supportive environments for children after school
To work towards this vision, NJSACC:
· Expands access to afterschool programs
· Improves the quality of afterschool programs
· Builds public and private and political support for affordable, high quality afterschool programs
Celebrate Afterschool: Outdoors in the Garden State
Connecting children with nature is a growing priority. For children it leads to more active play and less TV time. It spurs intellectual, emotional and social development. Concerns about nature deficit disorder and the national no child left inside campaign has captured imaginations of educators, health organizations, environmental groups, and families.
This campaign will link the NJSACC with children and nature through a high visibility, fun and educational program. It will engage key organizations and individuals throughout the state to raise the profile of the afterschool field and build support for it. It will have local and national impact
For local impact, we will create weeklong high visibility events during the week of May 11, 2008, that brings afterschool programs outdoors and engages the larger community. We will work with afterschool programs to become catalysts for children and nature programs in their communities. A how-to kit will guide local programs to build partnerships and create community events. It will include a short curriculum for afterschool programs to use with children and tools to plan and promote public events. Materials will highlight access and quality in afterschool as well as connections with nature.
For statewide impact, we will use this campaign as a vehicle to build new partnerships and alliances. By linking NJSACC with children and nature, we can both engage traditional supporters of afterschool and bring in new audiences (environmental, parks, child advocacy, etc.). It is an opportunity to link afterschool with hands-on learning, fitness, arts, environmentalism, and community service. It will also provide a role for Afterschool Champions. We will connect with the national Afterschool for All initiative to begin building policy support for afterschool. A statewide policy forum will make the case for afterschool to policy and opinion leaders.
While children and nature, provides a valuable hook, we will integrate longstanding messages about the value of afterschool for educational outcomes, youth development and delinquency prevention. Our goal is to build support for high quality afterschool, not only for nature-related programs.
Steering Committee Members include
· Vicky Banach, Consultant to Corporate Voices
· Tina Blackledge, Trenton After School Program
· Terri Buccarelli, New Jersey Department of Human Services
· Creighton Drury, Office of the Attorney General
· Kathy Enerlich, New Jersey Department of Children and Families
· Diane Genco, NJSACC
· Shonda Laurel, New Jersey Department of Human Services
· Connie Ludwin, Boys & Girls Club in New Jersey
· Sue Martz, New Jersey Department of Education
· Jim McGlynn, New Jersey After 3
· Haydee Perez, New Jersey Department of Education
· Steve Runk, New Jersey State Council on the Arts
· Jane Sharp, New Jersey Department of Human Services
· Brooke Stolting, New Jersey Department of Education
· Mark Valli, New Jersey After 3
· Beverly Wellons, New Jersey Department of Human Services
· Nina Mitchell Wells, New Jersey Secretary of State
· Tom Zsiga, New Jersey Association of Child Care Resource and Referral Agencies
For more information on the New Jersey Afterschool Network, visit www.njsacc.org
September 4, 2008