A common problem for working parents everywhere is finding reliable, affordable childcare in the hours between the time school lets out and the workday ends. No one wants to be forced to leave his or her children at home unattended, even for a few hours. The prospect of being without interim childcare can be scary. Fortunately, many Pittsburgh agencies and organizations offer quality programs across the city that provide a safe place for children and supplements their in-school education with fun, enriching activities and experiences.
The Pittsburgh Project
2801 North Charles Street
Hours: Mon to Fri – 3:15 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Price: $100 for the school year
Program Information: www.pittsburghproject.org
The Pittsburgh Project’s B.A.S.I.C. ACADEMY is an afterschool program that runs in conjunction with the Pittsburgh Public Schools’ yearly schedule. The program serves 80 students in Kindergarten through 5th grade. Program participants receive help with homework and a healthy snack every day, as well as exposure to activities such as ecology workshops, performing arts and recreation. The program also offers computer labs, field trips and special guests. This is a faith-based program and charges a fee for services. Transportation is not provided. Contact The Pittsburgh Project for registration information and rates.
218 North Highland Avenue
Hours and Price: Vary by program
Program Information: www.wireless-neighborhoods.org
Wireless Neighborhoods exists to improve the educational opportunities of African American and lower-income families in partnerships with community and faith-based organizations. They provide afterschool programs to the city of Pittsburgh and beyond. Various programs serve kids in Kindergarten through 12th grade. Pittsburgh LEARNS is a program that serves 282 1st and 2nd graders in seven Pittsburgh Public schools in partnership with 21st Century Learning Centers across the city. Pittsburgh LEARNS operates Monday through Friday from 3:30 p.m. through between 6:00 and 7:00 p.m. during the school year. An 8-week daylong program is also available in the summer. Ready to LEARN is a grant-funded program for elementary-aged kids attending Pittsburgh Public Schools’ Accelerated Learning Academies. Community LEARNS serves 9th – 12th grade students at Pittsburgh’s Peabody High School. The program offers academic, employment and recreational support services to underperforming students. Each of Wireless Neighborhoods’ programs works to improve the lives of at-risk children. Contact the organization for specific program information.
YMCA of Greater Pittsburgh
420 Fort Duquesne Boulevard
Hours and Price: Vary by Program
Specific Program Information: http://www.ymcaofpittsburgh.org/
The YMCA of Greater Pittsburgh offers before and after school programs at several schools within their branch locations. They currently offer nearly 50 individual programs, so it’s likely there is a program near you. Visit the YMCA of Greater Pittsburgh website for specific locations available and contact information.
YWCA of Greater Pittsburgh
Children and Youth Development and Education
6907 Frankstown Avenue
Hours: before school, after school and extended hours available
Price: Call for weekly rates and availability
Specific Program Information: http://www.ywcapgh.org
The YWCA of Greater Pittsburgh offers afterschool programming to children between 5 and 12 years of age. Educational and recreational programming is provided, and nutritious meals are offered. Children will often receive special learning opportunities through the YWCA’s community partners, such as the Carnegie Science Center, Frick Arts Museum and Highmark SPARK program. Contact the YWCA for program details.
These afterschool programs have locations throughout the city for kids of all ages. If you don’t see an offering near you, check out AftrschoolPGH.org. This website includes extensive information for afterschool programs throughout Southwestern Pennsylvania.
Mary Davis is a freelance writer from Butler. When not attached to her laptop, she’s spending time with her three kids or engrossed in a good book.