· Children & teens are more likely to participate in violent crimes during the after-school hours than at any other time
· Children & teens are more likely to engage in risky behaviors such as tobacco, alcohol or drug use or sexual activity during the after-school hours than at any other time. (Courtesy National Youth Violence Prevention Resource Center)
Youth who spend only a couple of hours per week in extracurricular after-school activities are significantly less likely to drop out of school; become teen parents; or use tobacco, alcohol or drugs. Spending 5-19 hours per week in after-school activities reduced the risk even further.
It is important that these activities are not just time wasters, but are programs that help youth develop skills and values and provide them with experiences that mean something to them.
It doesn't take a lot. Our schools and community offer a variety of after-school clubs, sports, and activities. Encourage your children to find something that interests them and participate regularly.