RI Afterschool Network

RI Afterschool Network

Kids thriving. Families working. Providers connecting. Schools excelling.

We are a partnership of individuals and organizations promoting young people’s safety, healthy development and learning outside the traditional classroom.

We do this by providing training and technical assistance to improve program quality; influencing policy on behalf of youth and families; and expanding funding opportunities.

We're a movement to make every hour count for every child in Rhode Island

Afterschool programs are a critical element of learning, particularly for Black, Latinx, and other children of color. That’s why we are actively working to create pathways for more youth of color to participate in high quality, out-of-school time programs.

The Rhode Island Afterschool Network encourages parents, policymakers, and school officials to rethink their definition of learning and consider the expanded learning that takes place outside of the traditional school day. We believe that every family should have the opportunity to choose from a range of high-quality, age-appropriate, affordable after school and summer programs.

Out-of-school time learning is a strategic focus for United Way of Rhode Island.

Together we can support student success

Rhode Island Afterschool Network members stay apprised of our work and help:

  • Advocate for more state and federal investments,
  • Build a statewide system to enhance program quality,
  • Connect leaders and innovators in Rhode Island and across the nation, and
  • Demonstrate the results of programs.

For more information, contact Ayana Melvan at ayana.melvan@unitedwayri.org.

The challenge: Latest Rhode Island research

Nearly 60,000 of our state’s school-aged children (out of 153,000) want to be in afterschool programs and don't have access, according to the "After 3PM 2020" report published on December 8, 2020, by the Afterschool Alliance. As troubling as this is, it only scratches the surface of the direction our state has gone in a very short time – 59 percent more kids unable to participate today than just one year ago. Parents across the state, two out of three, also report that afterschool programs are too expensive. Go to the "After 3PM 2020" report.

The State of Out-of-School Time Learning Programs in Rhode Island

Afterschool programs lead to higher test scores and less absenteeism

Our fall 2019 report, The State of Out-of-School Time Learning Programs in Rhode Island, delves further into the issues preventing young Rhode Islanders from participating in these programs. Download the PDF.

LEADERSHIP, PARTNERS AND RESOURCES

LEADERSHIP

Rhode Island Afterschool Network committee includes afterschool programs, community organizations, and government partners.

Terry Curtin
Executive Director
Connecting for Children and Families

Adrienne Gagnon
Executive Director
DownCity Design

Jim Hoyt
Chief Executive Officer
Boys & Girls Club of Pawtucket

Maryclaire Knight
Knight Consulting

Jael Lopes
Director of Strategic Partnerships
Providence School Department

Ayana Melvan
Senior Project Manager, Educational Initiatives
United Way of Rhode Island

Jan Mermin
21st CCLC Manager & Expanded Learning Opportunity Specialist
Rhode Island Department of Education

Hillary Salmons
Executive Director
Providence Afterschool Alliance

NATIONAL STATEWIDE AFTERSCHOOL NETWORK

Funded in part by the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, we’re part of a 50-state network; the National Statewide Afterschool Network actively collaborates with our colleagues across the nation to continue building a movement for learning beyond the traditional classroom.

AFTERSCHOOL ALLIANCE

The nation’s leading voice for afterschool, the Afterschool Alliance is dedicated to raising awareness of the importance of afterschool programs and advocating for more afterschool investments.

NATIONAL AFTERSCHOOL ASSOCIATION

We’re also a state affiliate of the National AfterSchool Association, a membership association for professionals who work with youth in diverse school and community-based settings to provide extended learning opportunities during out-of-school hours.

Attend a professional development training provided by Rhode Island Afterschool Network and become an Ambassador Member of NAA. Learn more at naaweb.org.

NATIONAL AND REGIONAL RESEARCH

Child Trends
Provides excellent research and briefs for the out-of-school time field, including staff development, school and community involvement, and outcome measurements.

Every Hour Counts
A coalition of citywide organizations that increase access to quality learning opportunities, particularly for underserved students.

The Finance Project
Offers wide-ranging research related to their core mission to help leaders finance and sustain initiatives to build better futures for children, families, and communities.

The Forum for Youth Investment
A trusted resource for policymakers, advocates, researchers, and program professionals. Provides youth and adult leaders with the information, connections, and tools they need to create greater opportunities and outcomes for young people.

Harvard Family Research Project (HFRP)
Publishes an evaluation periodical (The Evaluation Exchange) that addresses current issues facing program evaluators of all levels, with articles written by the most prominent evaluators in the field. HFRP also provides a compilation of evaluation profiles of out-of-school-time programs and initiatives.

Nellie Mae Education Foundation
Dedicated solely to preparing New England’s learners for success. The Foundation’s strategic focus is promoting student-centered learning at the middle and high school levels across the region.

The Wallace Foundation
Seeks to support and share effective ideas and practices that will strengthen education leadership, arts participation, and out-of-school learning.

IN THE NEWS

21-Day Equity Challenge logo

United Way starts 21-Day Equity Challenge

Rhode Island Monthly

"If you’d like to learn more about equity and its role in the fight against systemic racism, United Way… is here to help. Starting on Wednesday, February 24, Rhode Islanders can take part in United Way’s 21-Day Equity Challenge. Participants will receive a daily email that will feature different topics on racial equity, [including] racial identity, implicit bias… and allyship."

Read on site

11 members of Forbes Nonprofit Council

11 Ways Nonprofits Can Garner Feedback

Forbes Nonprofit Council

"As with any business, [nonprofits must] balance… where… donors want to go and what… [customers] desire… [and] find a way to make giving feedback as painless as possible… To help, 11 members of Forbes Nonprofit Council discuss how [nonprofits can] generate feedback from both donors and customers to better plot the trajectory of the organization."

Read on site

Cortney Nicolato - CEO of United Way discusses the upcoming bond issue question for housing

United Way’s Nicolato: Support All 7 Bonds

GoLocalProv

"Cortney Nicolato with United Way of Rhode Island appeared on GoLocal LIVE to advocate for all seven bonds on the March 2 special election ballot — and one bond question most importantly. Nicolato explained why United Way believes question three to support affordable housing is most critical for the community."

View on site

UPCOMING EVENTS

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YLC and Wavemaker Networking Night

Join Young Leaders Circle (YLC) members and Wavemaker Fellows at 5:30 p.m for a virtual networking event. You'll have the opportunity to meet other young professionals and expand your network from the comfort of your home.

Register here.

forum on economic stability

Forum on Economic Stability

Join United Way of Rhode Island and the City of Providence at 1 p.m. for a virtual forum on economic stability. You'll hear from policymakers and advocates about policies you can advocate for to help Rhode Island families achieve economic stability.

Register here.

Our Community Learning Partners Series features community partners that are dedicated to improving children's literacy.

Community Learning Partners Series

Join Women United at 12 p.m. for the next event in their Community Learning Partners Series. You'll hear an update on the state of afterschool in Rhode Island from United Way's Ayana Melvan and Representative Julie A. Casimiro.

Register here.