EXTRA CURICULUM PROGRAMS
Here at UTA we understand that extra-curricular activities are beneficial on a social, emotional and educational level which is why we fund so many after school programs.
A good academic afterschool program can turn the aimless hours after school into productive learning time. This is a big benefit for kids with learning and attention issues because the environment is very different to that of a classroom; stress – free, exciting and without the tension of tests and exams. There is also an excellent opportunity for higher achieving students who may feel overlooked in their mainstream classroom and are looking for a challenge.
Research shows that the hours between 3 and 6pm are when kids are most likely to commit crimes, drink, use drugs or become the victims of crime. But keeping children busy can prevent them from engaging in risky behaviour as well as enabling them to develop essential social skills. This is why we fund organisations which provide just such stimuli e.g. drama and music clubs.
We also provide grants to programs that promote health and wellbeing such as after school swimming, exercise etc. Statistics clearly show that the UK is the second most obese country in Europe. 19.1% of children in Year 6 (aged 10-11) are obese and a further 14.2% are overweight. The obesity crisis is growing and the best way to tackle it is from the ground up.
And the advantages don’t end there; one of the popular programs we fund is a father and son club. Boys of all ages are encouraged to meet up with their dads, once a week, in a friendly and fun environment, where dads are encouraged to take an interest and assist in homework activities. Research in the last three decades has established a clear link between parental involvement and children’s educational attainment and of course the emotional impact cannot be overlooked. The program encourages and builds strong family ties and healthy connections, values that are essential to every community.
Summer holiday camps for children are another provision for which we provide a lot of funding. For children of all ages this is a wonderful opportunity to have fun and socialise in a supervised environment. The health benefits of the outdoor programs and the social benefits of the camaraderie, builds confidence and lasting relationships.