The city of New Haven is stepping in to help families affected by the closure of the Boys & Girls Club of New Haven’s after-school program.
The city, New Haven Public Schools, and the Housing Authority of New Haven, have partnered together to provide an alternative for families who rely on the organization, which is ending its after-school programs due to financial concerns.
According to an announcement from the mayor’s office, the partnership will run programming starting Monday through December 18, 2019. The Boys & Girls Club program is scheduled to end Friday. The organization had said they hoped the closure was temporary, but did not have a timeline for when it may reopen.
“This short-notice circumstance presented itself with no easy answer: the Boys and Girls Club is a private entity with what seem to be insurmountable, short-term financial difficulties,” Mayor Toni Harp said in a statement. “With thanks to my staff, NHPS staff, and Dr. DuBois-Walton and her staff at the housing authority, we identified resources and a location – and addressed transportation issues – to help these families resolve what would otherwise have been a childcare emergency.”
The mayor’s office said approximately 250 children were enrolled in the Boys & Girls Club. The new programming will be at the Roberto Clemente School and follow the same schedule and logistics as the Boys and Girls Program.
Nebiyou Masresha's 8-year-old son has been part of the program for the last year and a half.
"When this happened, it happened abruptly, so it affected a lot of us who are working parents," he said.
"It’s a historical place for New Haven. My wife attended this when she was young and her mother attended when she was young. My son attends this program. And we want it to continue. "
He's glad he won't have to find alternative care for his child immediately, but questions why the club waited so long to tell families there was a problem.
"It is one of those things. It's sad, it's unfortunate it happened. We just have to move forward now and see what we can do as parents and a community to have the New Haven Boys & Girls club open," he said.
Read the mayor's letter to families below.