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BuildOn - BCSM Afterschool Program
October 18, 2011 - Education and Literacy

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During the 2011-2012 school year, EGCF partner buildOn operated an Afterschool Program at Bronx Center for Science and Mathematics. buildOn has operated an Afterschool Program at BCSM since 2007. The program began with a small group of committed students and quickly expanded to become the most active buildOn Afterschool Program in New York City.

Students at BCSM actively participate in core activities of Service, Education and Building Schools and meets EGCF's balanced gender requirements with 53% of students being girls. buildOn has realized great successes in the first half of the school year at BCSM. Students who returned from a Trek for Knowledge to Mali last summer are highly committed to buildOn, service and their communities. In the first two months of the school year, they contributed 720 hours of community service and engaged in an additional 150+ hours of global education, leadership development and fundraising activities. Two committed teacher-advisors support the program at BCSM.

Between September 2011 and June 2012, an average of 55 BCSM students per month, or 184 unique students, participated in BCSM buildOn's service-oriented programming. In this time frame, they contributed over 2,200 hours of service in their community. Programs ranged from tutoring at a homeless shelter in the Bronx to learning about horticultural practices and improving a neighborhood park. Additionally, once per month, in program meetings after school, BCSM buildOn members engage in buildOn's local and global education curriculum. buildOn not only informs the students about local and global issues, but increases their ability to understand, relate to, and value diverse cultures. Each month students learn about an issue of local or global concern such as education, food or health and participate in a service activity that addresses it. Over the course of the school year, BCSM members engaged in 300+ hours of community and global education programming and other leadership development activities. In an outreach of this curriculum, Books of Hope, students create books with a global theme while learning about a new culture. The books are sent to a buildOn project country or brought to a local latch-key program and members read alongside children. buildOn also actively provides for building schools globally in developing countries. Twelve BCSM students traveled to Nicaragua in August 2012 to help construct a school there. During the 2012- 2013 school year, these twelve students will step up into leadership positions, helping to motivate their peers to reach their service goal.

EGCF is pleased to be able to have partnered with buildOn. buildOn also helps provide increased access to education for both girls and women, which is an important criteria for the Millennium Development Goals and EGCF. For more on buildOn, please visit their website at www.buildOn.org.