In the Carroll Park section of Philadelphia sits Resurrection Baptist Church, which for the past two years has been providing extra education for children of the area with their after school program.
The church, located at 54th Street and Lansdowne Avenue, is headed by Pastor Robert McFadden. McFadden said the program was started to give the children a safe haven during after school hours and to learn violence is not the way.
“This was an opportunity to help them really be able to deal with the issues of just increasing their knowledge specifically in areas like reading, math and as well as a science component,” McFadden said.
The program is offered throughout the regular school year and accepts children in kindergarten through eighth grade. Children are eligible to come back after completing each year.
“The children progress through our after school program. It is not a graded program,” Lynda Richardson said.
As the school year begins to come to a close, the Resurrection Baptist Church program is preparing to transition into its summer session.
“We’ve had some really nice programs in the past. Children have gone to Washington D.C., the wax museum. We’ve taken them to the Poconos. We’re very careful to make sure the experiences they get over the summer are an extension of what they are getting during the school year,” Resurrection Baptist Church Executive Administrator Jackie Henry said.
When the program began, it was funded out of the church budget. However, recently the church has been able to receive some help to grow the program.
“Now we do have some parents, as well as some children, that are state funded, so they are providing additional funding for what we do,” McFadden said. “At the end of the day, this is to provide a service for the children, not to make money.”
Children of all beliefs are accepted into the program and is not just limited to church members.