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Unique partnership teaches life skills to Toronto's Pelham Park youth

After-school program offers cooking, coding, homework help
Oct. 9, 2019
Megan Delaire

There’s a new space in Pelham Park where kids can go after school to learn cooking and coding, get help with their homework or just be kids.

The Pelham Park Youth Room opened inside Toronto Community Housing Corporation’s Pelham Park Gardens building on Sept. 28.

The new after-school program came about from a first-time partnership between Toronto Community Housing, Dovercourt Boys and Girls Club, Ubisoft and the city of Toronto. It is open to kids six to 15 years old from the Pelham Park neighbourhood and is free to attend.

Rasha Rahman, a spokesperson for the Boys and Girls Club, said the club seized on the opportunity to collaborate with Toronto Community Housing to bring the program to Pelham Park, one of the city’s priority communities.

“After-school programs are important because they provide support and safety for working parents, develop a sense of community and friendships for youth (and) help participants build key life skills,” Rahman said.

The Boys and Girls Club is in charge of the daily after-school programming, which includes snacks, homework help, cooking classes, science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) activities and computer programming.

Tech-based elements of the program like coding will be run in partnership with Ubisoft, a French software development company with an office in Toronto.

“This program is different from others because it offers a unique blend of programming,” said Rahman, “from coding and homework help to arts and crafts activities.”

The program runs from 3 to 6 p.m., Monday to Friday at 61 Pelham Park Gardens.

Participants must join the Boys and Girls Club to attend, but for kids joining to use the Pelham Park Youth Room, the usual club fee will be waived.