In 2009, community leaders working with youth in the City of East Palo Alto (EPA) and the Belle Haven neighborhood of Menlo Park approached the Gardner Center with a need to better understand why many youth remain disconnected from the community’s youth service programs and agencies. The Gardner Center collaborated with these leaders to gather and analyze data to answer the following questions: (1) What programs are available to youth in the EPA and Belle Haven communities, and where are there gaps or duplication in available services? (2) How do available programs overlap with the schedules and interests of youth? (3) What factors inhibit or facilitate accessing the services available to local youth? To answer these questions, interviews conducted with service providers to learn about available programming. In addition, youth was trained to survey their peers about out-of-school time practices, programmatic preferences, and barriers to participation. Finally, we compiled publicly available transit and crime data was completed to examine these potential barriers to accessing programs for youth. This report is a first step in exploring the relationships between program availability, youth preferences, and logistical factors.
Castrechini, Sebastian. (2010). Mapping out-of-school time resources for East Palo Alto and Belle Haven youth. Stanford, CA: John W. Gardner Center for Youth and their Communities.