Governor Phil Scott, Senator Bernie Sanders, and Vermont Afterschool are thrilled to announce the recipients of the Afterschool & Summer Expanding Access Grant program for summer 2022 and 2023 and the 2022–2023 school year. A total of $4.23 million was awarded to 39 programs from 11 Vermont counties.
Read the governor’s press release on the grants here. Building off the successful 2021 Summer Matters grant initiative and the progress Vermont has made toward offering universal afterschool and summer programs, the Expanding Access Grants will continue to reduce gaps in Vermont’s current summer and afterschool system by addressing affordability, increasing availability, building long-lasting partnerships to promote sustainability, and piloting innovative approaches.
The Afterschool & Summer Expanding Access grants are designed to help non-profit organizations, municipalities, and licensed/regulated providers of school-age child care to:
- Support children, youth, and families with afterschool and summer programs that address learning loss, support working families, and meet students’ well-being, connectedness, and mental health needs;
- Expand existing afterschool and summer learning programs for children and youth (kindergarten through grade 12) in areas where few or no services currently exist and in ways that increase the affordability, accessibility, availability, and inclusivity of all afterschool and summer programs throughout Vermont; and
- Build long-lasting, sustainable partnerships and implement systems innovations that will lead to more children and youth having access to quality afterschool and summer programs beyond the scope of this grant.
As we continue to work to address needs created or worsened by the pandemic, afterschool and summer programs offer important opportunities for Vermont’s children and youth to engage, connect, and heal.
Afterschool and summer programs provide safe and inclusive environments with more time for learning and growth and allow children and youth to build relationships, explore interests, develop skills, and have valuable experiences. Afterschool and summer programs also help working families and play an important role in our communities.
Our collective efforts to continue to reduce barriers and expand access to quality afterschool programs and summer enrichment opportunities will help inform efforts to provide universal afterschool in the future. We encourage you and your partners to think innovatively as you plan what these important opportunities can look like for the children and youth in your community!