The Need

Consider these disturbing statistics in the state of Virginia:

  • Every 32 minutes a baby is born into poverty
  • Every 20 minutes a baby is born to an unmarried mother
  • Every 49 seconds a public school student is suspended
  • Every 52 minutes a child is reported abused or neglected
  • Every 4 days a child or youth is murdered
  • Every 6 days a child or youth commits suicide


  • The Rand Corporation confirms that youth are more vulnerable after school. Their studies show that an incredible percentage of crime takes place between the hours of 3:00 pm and 7:00 pm. Our Learning Center serves the children from 2:15 p.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday and on some Saturdays.
  • 75% of mothers with children ages 6 to 17 are in the labor force and their children are vulnerable during these hours.
  • 71% of 4th graders read below the proficiency level.
  • 78% of reading classes have more than 20 pupils with a low teacher to student ratio.
  • Finally, Mentor, a guide produced by the National Mentoring Program, gives the following statistics: mentored youth are 52% less likely to skip school, (Our students LOVE coming to the center! They are not allowed to attend, however, if they are absent from school, so school attendance will be improved.), 33% less likely to commit assaults, 46% less likely to use drugs, and 27% less likely to abuse alcohol.

Statistics provided by the State of Virginia ’s Children Defense Fund, Year 2000.