The After-School Institute mission is to build the capacity of after-school program providers so that they can deliver high quality services in a caring and supportive environment.
Holistic programs play an essential part in keeping young people safe and focused. Many public and private organizations set aside funds for comprehensive after-school program centers, arts-, academics-, and athletics-league type programs, and other variations of after-school services.
Many new and current funding opportunities are contingent on meeting the Standards for Baltimore After-School Opportunities in YouthPlaces, modeled on the national standards established by the National School-Age Care Alliance. TASI's role is to help after-school providers achieve the standards or quality. We focus on the training and capacity building of after-school programs so our children get the attention and support they need.
"It is the responsibility of every adult-especially parents, educators, and religious leaders-to make sure that children hear what we have learned from the lessons of life and to hear over and over that we love them and they are not alone."
- Marian Wright Edelman
TASI's Primary Capacity-Building Areas
Our capacity-building efforts are divided into five main activities.
After-School Network Meetings
Network Meetings are held on the last Tuesday of each month from 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. As a forum to discuss, evaluate, plan, update, and conduct resource sharing, our meetings serve as the primary catalyst for all other activities. Meeting agendas are developed by network members through the Network Steering Committee and evaluation reports. As a result, our meetings are always meaningful and on-target.
Trainings and Technical Assistance
Our trainings, designed to equip after-school providers with a diverse skill base, are scheduled throughout the year. This includes, but is not limited to trainings held after monthly network meetings. We believe in supplying providers with the tools for sustainability. Our trainings not only build providers' proficiency, but also teaches them how to train others.
Technical assistance provides more intensive, institutional instruction to help an organization meet quality standards. One specific type of technical assistance that we provide is raising a program's level of awareness that youth involvement in the decision-making process of programming is vital to their success. This support is called youth engagement and is also geared towards youth recruitment and retention.
Regarding technical assistance, site visits can be conducted, as well as on-site trainings structured for the respective organization. This in-depth assistance and training may be offered to organizations that request it. Please visit Contact Us to inquire about technical assistance for your program.
Strategic Linkages and Collaborations
We work to establish linkages not only to support the improvement of after-school programs, but also to expand the broader network of organizations serving youth. We've formed relationships with an ever-growing number of after-school providers as well as regional and national organizations.
By visiting after-school programs, we gain a better understanding of the providers' experience, the facility, and the activities offered. Visits provide an opportunity for technical assistance and the creation of new partnerships in the community and beyond.
Materials Development and Distribution
We strive to keep after-school providers informed of the latest updates, best practices, local and national resources, events, and frequently requested information. Along with the development of this website, we distribute a variety of materials, including our quarterly newsletter "The After-Scoop". We regularly update relevant studies, articles, and other materials on our web site. Please visit Resources to browse through these as well as our online newsletter.
The After-School Institute's advisory committees are made up of individuals and organizations that share our vision, goals, and objectives for the safe and healthy development of our children and youth. The more participants we have, the more ideas and experiences we have to build on-and therefore the stronger we become. We convene two main committees, each dedicated to implementing our capacity- building strategies: Network Steering Committee and Training Collaborative. To learn more about joining, please visit Becoming a Member and request information.
The Steering Committee meets monthly to review evaluations and plan upcoming network meetings. Current committee members include:
- The After-School Institute
- Archdiocese of Baltimore-Division of Catholic Schools
- Chesapeake Center for Youth Development
- Fitness Fun & Games
- Franciscan Youth Center
- House of Mercy
- Parks and People Foundation
- Safe and Sound Campaign
- Youth as Resources
The Training Collaborative brings together creative thinkers from a variety of disciplines in order to design and incorporate comprehensive trainings that support the Standards for Baltimore After-School Opportunities in YouthPlaces.
- AIDS Administration
- The After-School Institute
- Baltimore City Public Schools
- Baltimore Council on Adolescent Pregnancy Parenting and Pregnancy Prevention
- Baltimore Mental Health Systems
- The Family League of Baltimore City
- Healthy Teens and Young Adults Center
- Housing Authority of Baltimore City
- Johns Hopkins University-School of Hygiene and Public Health
- Maryland Committee for Children
- Maryland Nonprofits
- Port Discovery
- Progressive Life Center
- United Way