Keeping Kids in School in Far Rockaway

Far Rockaway RBI (Reviving Baseball in Inner Cities), which runs a youth baseball league, is one of the programs at The Child Center. (Photo via The Wave)

Coinciding with the first week of school for NYC students, a profile in The Wave by Ralph Mancini takes a look at The Child Center of NY, an organization that serves the well-being of children in underprivileged communities through the city, including at its seven locations in Far Rockaway.

Much of the center’s mission is to prevent students from dropping out of school.

One of the ways that the 65-year-old group is positively impacting the lives of children and families in guiding them to a fulfilling future is through after-school enrichment programs aimed at improving literacy through tutoring and homework help along with preparing middle school youth with Regents and SAT (Scholastic Aptitude Test) prep.

“We serve a lot of young people through the cornerstones, generally 100 in each. There’s a special quality to the life of the Far Rockaway resident, particularly in the downtown area. Sometimes, it’s still hard to find any sort of consistency. There was so much violence spurring up all over and over,” said the licensed clinical social worker, who has presented on a number of panels about effective afterschool programming.

The center also connects students with adult mentors as Deepmalya Ghosh, senior VP of external affairs and community engagement, explains.

“Last year, we started to focus on an effort called success mentoring, a resource network to connect and try to get them at least, I think, two levels higher. The students in the school have a main point person they’re connected to within the school, not just teachers, but security guards or the staff in the kitchen; anybody who’s really connected and knows the students well, who can continue to check up on them to see how they’re doing.”

Go to The Wave to find out what other ways The Child Center, writes Mancini, follows the African proverb that it takes a village to raise a child.

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