Written by: John DeRousie, Custom Marketing Solutions
FULTON, NY – For students and parents in the APW school district, it is now easier than ever to learn about the latest happenings with Oswego County Opportunities’ Rural Afterschool Program (RASP). Thanks to a collaboration with APW middle school and Oswego County BOCES, OCO’s RASP now has a presence on the APW website.
Accessible through a link from APW site’s extra curricular activities page; students, parents and academic staff now enjoy easy access to everything they need to know about OCO’s Rural Afterschool Program from times available to a complete schedule for the week. The APW School District website can be found at www.apw.cnyric.org
“We appreciate the opportunity to be a part of the website for the APW school district,” said Laura Licatese, Afterschool Coordinator with OCO’s Education Services. “It is an excellent resource that not only provides detailed information about RASP at the APW Middle School, but a private Blog spot that allows RASP staff, academic staff, and parents to easily communicate and share their thoughts and ideas about the after school program. Additionally, there soon will be a link to OCO’s main website so that users can discover other programs that OCO offers.”
Available after each full school day, the Rural Afterschool Program at APW Middle School is held from dismissal until 5:45 p.m. The program is staffed daily by one senior youth specialist, two youth specialists from OCO, three academic staff members, and two peer specialists who have been trained by RASP staff.
According to Michelle Mulholland, OCO’s Senior Youth Specialist at APW, participants in the after school program have a wide variety of projects and activities to choose from. “RASP offers students much more than just recreational and educational activities. They have access to life skills training such as communication skills and developing healthy relationships, enrichment activities such as music, as well as web design and access to a computer lab. Additionally, we facilitate a number of youth groups that focus on social support, community service, and pertinent issues such as violence prevention, substance use prevention, and cultural awareness. We also host presentations regarding OCO’s Youth Services and Cornell Cooperative Extension’s 4H program,” said Mulholland.
While OCO’s Rural Afterschool Program is currently offered at the APW Middle School, Hannibal Middle School and Fulton Junior High School, Licatese is looking forward to the day when RASP expands to high schools and is available in every school district in Oswego County. “RASP has been well received by both the school and the parents. We have received positive feedback and welcome input from them as well as the youth who participate in the program. Our presence on the APW school district website is just the beginning of our expansion as we look to have a presence on the Fulton Jr. High School and Hannibal Middle School websites in the near future and procure additional funding to bring RASP to more schools,” added Licatese.
Available at no cost to students, OCO’ Rural Afterschool Program (RASP) provides academic, emotional and social support to assist youth in building skills that lead to academic excellence, social competence and community responsibility. For more information on OCO’s Rural Afterschool Program, contact Laura Licatese at 315-598-4711 or via e-mail at [email protected]
One of Oswego County’s largest employers, OCO’s workforce of more than 650 employees and 1000 volunteers provide more than 50 human services programs that touch the lives of more than 28,000 each year. As OCO celebrates its 45th anniversary it is on a roll to continue its mission of helping people, supporting communities, changing lives, and improving the quality of life for Oswego County residents. For more information on OCO, a member agency of the United Way of Greater Oswego County, visit their website at www.oco.org