Boys & Girls Clubs of Canada draws from well-respected research experts to produce publications on critical issues affecting children and youth. They’ve found that communities need to provides positive experience that youth need to become successful. Evidence is mounting on the efficacy of after-school programs in encouraging youth to make positive choices. A review of such program found that “compared to doing nothing at all, having an effective [after school program] would result in … 35% more youth improving in positive social behaviors, 30% demonstrating less problem behavior, 25% with less drug use, an additional 30% who feel more connected and bonded to their school, and 43% who feel better about themselves and their abilities.”
Their reports have found:
- 93% of BGC Alumni credit a particular staff member for developing, helping and supporting them
- Improving the quality of life in a high-risk neighbourhood through free recreational activities for young people, more jobs for youth and better use of the physical space has been shown to reduce police reported crime by 60% over a 1 ½ year period
- A dollar for enriched child care saves $17 in criminal justice costs.
- Helping children gain life skills early on “can prevent aggression, reduce involvement in violence, improve social skills, boost educational achievement and improve job prospects” – benefits that have the potential to last into adulthood