Letter to the Editor (Lancaster Online, June 6, 2022)

Our kids are in crisis. After more than two years of uncertainty and interrupted learning, the academic and social-emotional toll is clear — our kids need increased access to programs, services and caring adults more than ever.

Recently, Pennsylvania House Bill 2429 was introduced to invest in quality programs by creating the Building Opportunity through Out-of-School Time (BOOST) Grant Program. This initiative would support community-serving nonprofits such as the Boys & Girls Club of Lancaster, where we provide quality after-school programs for just $1 per year.

At Boys & Girls Club of Lancaster, we see the inequities and challenges facing our young people every day. We have witnessed firsthand the impacts of the pandemic, and we are gravely concerned about its lasting impact on children. The time to act is now.

We remain committed to providing every child with the opportunity for a better future, no matter their background; to ensuring that success is within reach for every young person who enters our doors; and to helping everyone reach their full potential.

But we can’t do it alone. We urge our legislators to act now.

It’s on all of us to move the needle for our youth, creating real opportunity based on kids’ potential — not on the circumstances that surround them. Our young people are the promise of tomorrow. Prioritizing and investing in out-of-school time not only leads to better outcomes for our kids, but also to a healthier, safer and more prosperous Lancaster.

Karen Schloer, CEO
Boys & Girls Club of Lancaster

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