The pencils, pens, and paper are carefully organized. The Junior Leader training manuals are carefully stacked. Paint, brushes, and canvas boards are lined up. Youth will be here at Patchwork next Tuesday.
Jane, Rita, Leslie, Jean, and a team of college interns have been busy planning and preparing. In some ways, this is like any other year. But, of course, this isn’t like any year before. Along with plans for homework help, leadership training, and art projects, we’ve drawn up plans for disinfecting and social distancing.
We examined the things that are at the core of what we do at Patchwork, and we redesigned our Arts & Smarts program in response to the COVID-19 crisis. And what is at our core? The ability to connect individually with children and their families. The ability to surround each child with a community of adults and other children who are all encouraging one another to explore the things that interest them, to do their best in life, and to do their part to make the world a better place.
We’re talking to each of the families who participated in our Arts & Smarts program last year. We want to hear from them: How can we help? What are you lacking this year? What gaps can we help fill? We’re also scheduling our days to a degree that we never have before, and we’re limiting the number of participants who can join us each day. This will help us make sure we have sufficient space among everyone involved.
Additionally, we’ve moved the desks out of the tutoring room and set them up in Patchwork’s main room to allow for better airflow and more space between students and the adults assisting them. In place of our regular Tutoring Program, this Homework Help will be available for children every day that they are scheduled to be at Patchwork. For many families, simply having reliable access to Wi-Fi and knowledgeable adults to provide minor tech support will make a huge difference.
Of course, we’ll also be doing the usual fun things like creating art, eating healthy snacks, playing games, and gardening, and we’ll be strengthening old friendships and building new ones.
If you would like your child to participate this year, please contact us at Patchwork (812-424-2735 or PWCentral@Patchwork.org) and ask for more information!