The Center provides children and teens in Midland, PA with a safe out-of-school space to learn, explore, and develop through a variety of programs, as well as support for their families.
The Center’s after-school program provides tutoring, dinner, and age-appropriate lessons and activities for children ages 4 years through high school. This program utilizes a group mentoring model, giving children an opportunity to build meaningful connections with caring, consistent adults who provide guidance and support. Part of their curriculum involves bringing in guest speakers and artists who engage the students in diverse forms of self-expression through the arts and offer practical teaching and conversation around topics such as finance, goal setting, and mental health. Another component of this program is enrichment classes in art, music, cooking, and fitness, offered to students in 4th grade and older on a weekly basis, as well as the Communicycle program that teaches children of all ages and adults how to repair and earn bikes.
The Center’s partnership with 4H also allows them to provide solid STEAM instruction for middle school students on topics such as “Kitchen Chemistry,” while their high school leadership team is equipped with leadership skills and empowered to work towards positive change in their lives, homes, and community. They also empower older students through a peer mentoring program, where one high school student is matched with a child aged 4-8 years old. They meet once a week at The Center to help their mentees with homework and social skills, and to provide a healthy, positive role model for the younger children.
The Center believes it is crucial to provide children with new experiences that will open their minds to fresh possibilities. Therefore, they provide educational trips for students on a regular basis. For example, the youngest children explore the Pittsburgh Children’s Museum, while the middle school kids experience farm life at Faith Ranch. The high school students prepare and serve a meal to those in need in Aliquippa and Pittsburgh. Each unique experience has the potential to ignite a new passion in a young mind and allows the children’s perspective of the world to expand, tapping into the vast potential of each child.
Aside from the vital opportunities they provide for the children and teens to create and grow, The Center understands that it is necessary to also support families in order to help sustain lasting change in these young lives. Their food bank and clothing banks help to provide needed resources in a town lacking any grocery or retail store. They also partner with other organizations, such as Mission Vision, Beaver Health Mart, Choices, Catholic Charities, and others, to help make additional medical and mental health resources accessible to a community that lacks all of these, as well as no public transportation. Furthermore, they seek to equip and empower families by providing classes in finance, drugs, and helping children to succeed in school. Many of the families they invest in lack resources due to economic circumstances and simply need a little support and encouragement in order to thrive.