By Portia Williams
The Counseling Center’s Summer Outreach Program’s 26th year was a successful one. According to the coordinator of the program, Clarence Parker, attendance for the program continued to increase throughout the summer.
“We had over 300 registrations for the year, we had a high average of 158 one day, the June average was 136 students per day, and we had a little more than that in July, we had about 109 students per day,” Parker said. “The kids really enjoyed it, and that is what it is all about.”
He said they received an incredible amount of support from the local community.
“We had a lot of community support, over 20 agencies and businesses, and that is an indication of just how much the community is dedicated to helping with this program,” he said. “Overall, it was a relatively safe and exciting summer, there were no major incidences or injuries, and the kids just really enjoyed themselves.”
He also said the staff and community volunteers have been an invaluable asset to the Summer Outreach Program.
As is the tradition, the 2015 Summer Outreach Clubs take trip out of town. This year, the big excursion was Fort Rapids Water Park in Columbus, Ohio. Two trips were taken to Fort Rapids on Wednesday and Thursday on a chartered bus each day.
“We are finishing up with our field trips. We went to Columbus to Fort Rapids yesterday, and we are going back there today,” he said. “We took the younger kids yesterday, and today we were supposed to go to the beach water park in Cincinnati, but with the weather and the rain, we decided to go back to Fort Rapids because it is indoors.”
The closing ceremony for the program was held at the 14th Street Community Center on Tuesday.
“Our closing program was on Tuesday, and we acknowledged the kids with outstanding attendance, perfect attendance, kids that have improved over the summer since last year,” he said. “One little girl was given the Sunshine Award for being a bright spot all summer. She kept everybody giggling, and laughing, and smiling and joking. Also at that time, we recognized all of the agencies and businesses that have contributed and made it possible for us to operate another year of this program.”
Reach Portia Williams at 740-353-3101, ext. 1929, or on Twitter @PortiaWillPDT.