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Edison students speak out about After School Program
By Bob Robinson

“This program was a phenomenal experience. It helped me grow as a person; some days I didn't want to be there or had a bad day and I would have to put all that aside because some of the kids could be having a rough day and I’d need to be there for them.”

 “In my personal opinion I believe that the After School Program could make the difference for a child who may be on the edge at a crucial point in childhood.”

“Given a chance to grow and thrive in a positive environment, I see these children blossoming before my eyes. I feel blessed that I have become a bright spot in their day and they look forward to spending time with me as much as I do with them.”

“The program wasn’t just about helping the students; it has also evolved me as a volunteer. The After School Program has rededicated my commitment to learning…”

These are just a few of the comments from Edison students who have been working in the Empowering Darke County Youth After School Program. All students, whether they chose this or other options for their Fundamentals of Communications term project, had to write an evaluation of the program or project of their choice. A little over a third of the students chose Empowering Darke County Youth’s After School Program… and the impact on many of them has been dramatic.

“I’ve always wanted to make a difference in the world,” said one student. “Finally, I am.”

“It was a great experience to have and I will remember it forever,” said another.

The After School Program uses (and requires) one or more licensed tutors on site at all times, however Edison students are its backbone. The program couldn’t exist without them. Over the next week or two, County News Online will be publishing some of the evaluations these students have written.

This program has not only had a huge impact on the participating kids, but also on the “big kids” they look up to.

While nearly all students indicated growth in themselves or considerable value in the program – or both – they all were required to relate the experience to Edison’s Core Values, and to suggest improvements that could be made. Most found that knowledge and the ability to use the Core Values – Communication, Critical Thinking, Ethics, Respect for Learning, Human Diversity and Teamwork – were essential in successfully working with these children. They also noted one serious need… more volunteers!!

If you would like the same rewarding experience these students discovered, please contact Empowering Darke County Youth at You can also communicate with the organization through Facebook Empowering Darke County Youth. Find out more about the organization and the program at

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