Granting students room to grow

By Kelly McCarthy

April 17, 2013 Updated Apr 17, 2013 at 6:19 PM EDT

Binghamton, NY (WBNG Binghamton) Interactive learning games and cooking classes are some after-school activities receiving more funding through a national philanthropy contest.

UHS is sponsoring after-school summer programs at Theodore Roosevelt and Benjamin Franklin elementary schools will receive $10,000

"I'm hoping that the $10,000 dollars helps them sustain the program for a long time and I'm also hoping that they can grow to help more kids," said Binghamton University senior Alexandria Hall.

The program is similar to an in-school doctor's office as It provides physical, dental and psychological care to children at the two elementary schools.

Jenelle Smith, a UHS program social worker, says the program started with caregivers bringing in their own supplies from home.

Smith says the award money will give workers the ability to make long-term investments in student wellness.

The money comes after Binghamton University college students entered a national contest on behalf of the non-profit program.

The students chose to make a video for the UHS Foundation after becoming familiar with the organization and its work in a philanthropy in civil society course, offered by Binghamton University.

"Seeing them being able to use the money to really change their lives," Hall said. "Change the way they think about nutrition and exercise and building parent-child relationships. Seeing the money go towards that makes me feel really good."

The program is offered to any child in the two elementary schools, as well as their siblings and family members.