During the out-of-school time hours, After School Matters annually provides more than 15,000 unique Chicago teens with high-quality, project-based apprenticeships. These apprenticeships connect teens with some of Chicago’s finest institutions, from the School of the Art Institute and Joffrey Ballet, to the Adler Planetarium and John G. Shedd Aquarium. Most importantly, these apprenticeships keep teens safe and off the streets during the most critical hours of the day.
More than 70 percent of After School Matters teens reside in Chicago's lowest income communities, of which 89 percent are living in poverty. The highest population of After School Matters teens come from the Austin neighborhood on the west side, where the annual per capita income is just $15,957. Austin is plagued by crime and gang violence and is also shadowed by one of the highest homicide rates in the city. Unfortunately, our teens speak regularly about the violence and crime they witness in their communities. And while we work tirelessly to provide as many programs as possible, in these communities the need is never met.
In 2015, After School Matters had 38,681 unique applicants for an available 22,085 program opportunities, more than 16,500 opportunities short of demand. Which is why we need you. By donating to Team After School Matters, you become an invaluable asset in the fight against crime and gang violence in every neighborhood of Chicago. Most importantly, you help provide critical programming to some of Chicago's most underserved teens.