APRIL 2020
The NC Center for Afterschool Programs team has closely watched the developing situation around the COVID-19 pandemic across the state, nation, and globe. The health and safety of our afterschool, before school, and summer program professionals and advocates is of paramount importance to us, and NC CAP does not want to jeopardize the health or well-being of attendees, vendors, or presenters. For these reasons, the NC CAP team has decided to reschedule the Synergy Conference 2020.  I nstead of convening in April, the conference will be postponed until July 28th - July 31st. The conference will remain at the Koury Convention Center in Greensboro, NC.
*Note: July 28th and 29th will be for the 21st Century Community Learning Center Programs only. 

If you have registered, paid the registration fee, and able to attend the Synergy Conference 2020 during the rescheduled dates in July, no action is required. 

If you have registered, paid the registration fee, and are unable to attend the Synergy Conference 2020 during the rescheduled dates in July, requests for full refunds were due March 31st. 

If you have any other questions regarding payment, please email Rhonda van Dijk at  

Regular registration will remain open for the Synergy Conference. You can register here by June 30th, 2020 for the regular rate of $225. Late registration will begin on July 31st, 2020 at the rate of $250. 

All lodging reservations at the Koury Convention Center for April 28th-30th have been cancelled on your behalf. A new hotel reservation block at the Sheraton Greensboro at Four Seasons has been opened for the rescheduled dates at the discounted rate of $147 per night. You can make reservations here
Check out the Synergy Conference 2020 page periodically for additional conference details.

We hope to see you in Greensboro!
North Carolina is one of the leading states in STEM career pathways, however, the pipeline to grow and develop the future leaders of STEM is inadequate. NC CAP utilized data from the mapping database to determine that 3 out of 4 out-of-school-time (OST) programs across North Carolina were integrating variations of informal STEM education in their programs. Given this information, NC CAP recognizes that gaps exist that continuously challenge the effectiveness and quality of STEM in OST programs. Gaps include access to formalized professional development and training, inability to assess the impact of informal STEM opportunities, and the awareness of and access to quality STEM resources and opportunities.
This month, NC CAP debuts the STEM Hub, which will offer an array of STEM-related resources that will be available for public access on the NC CAP website. Within the STEM Hub there will be four STEM-focused initiatives: 
  • STEM Lessons: high-quality STEM lesson in earth science, environmental science, life science, and physical science that can be easily integrated into out-of-school time programs, as well as other formal education contexts. 
  • STEMinar Series: monthly series of webinars focused on STEM experiments, resources, careers, and engagement opportunities that can be leveraged by out-of-school time programs, schools, families, and communities. 
  • STEM Opportunity Spotlight: The NC STEM Center, which is a web portal for all things related to STEM education in the state, has created a directory of statewide STEM opportunities such as camps, events, festivals, workshops, and competitions. NC CAP will spotlight opportunities from the directory on the STEM Hub to ensure that program providers statewide are aware of and can leverage these upcoming STEM opportunities.
  • STEM Coalition, or STEMco: intentional convening of individuals from varying sectors to discuss barriers related to diversity, equity, and inclusion within STEM careers and to develop strategies that will ensure more youth, especially girls and minorities, are involved in STEM learning as early as Kindergarten. 
Each of these initiatives will increase engagement of STEM-related organizations and partners, improve OST staff confidence in delivery of STEM activities and curriculum, increase the number of programs delivering high-quality STEM programming, and improve cross-sector collaborative systems to support STEM exposure, learning, and career exploration.

To learn more about the STEM Hub and the STEM initiatives, please click here
The NC Center for Afterschool Programs has developed a mapping database to locate child care services and out-of-school-time programming opportunities for youth during the statewide COVID-19 response. 

NC CAP would like to hear how your program is responding to COVID-19, please complete the following: 
  1. Complete the survey.
  2. If your out-of-school time program is still operating during COVID-19, please register your program in the NC COVID-19 Youth Program Mapping Database.
  3. If you have any additional resources that can be shared with other programs, families, and communities throughout NC, please email Sheneika Simmons at
To learn more information about resources during the COVID-19 pandemic, please view the  NC COVID-19 Resources webpage .

As we all experience the affects of COVID-19, NC CAP wants to highlight opportunities for program providers to continue advocating, supporting, and serving youth statewide. This list is not exhaustive and NC CAP will continue to share resources and information as they develop. Please feel free to share these resources with youth, families, and communities that you serve.

Resource Title
Type of Resource
Additional Information
ENC STEM at Home Lessons  Youth & Providers  ENC STEM
 created an ENC STEM at Home lesson for students to enjoy. 
COVID-19: Consideratio ns for the Afterschool Field
 Afterschool Alliance
 designed a guidance resource for programs and issues that providers may want to consider. 
COVID-19 Online Learning Supports
The Afterschool Alliance has partnered with the American Federation of Teachers to provide a list of resources for online learning and collaboration. 
Education Galaxy Online EOG Test Prep Youth & Providers Education Galaxy is providing free accounts to schools and providers. 
The Walking Classroom Educational Podcasts for Learning at Home
Youth & Providers The Walking Classroom
 devised a list of free podcasts and lessons.
No Kid Hungry NC Meals During Closures Guidance ALL No Kid Hungry NC created a list of places offering meals during the COVID-19 outbreak.  
Audible Stories
Youth Audible Stories
 offers youth the option to instantly stream a collection of stories, including titles across six difference languages. 
COVID-19 Response from Internet Providers Guidance ALL Several companies that provide internet and cell phone
 service are responding to COVID-19 by providing a variety of services. 
Imagineering in a Box Lessons ALL Khan Academy and Disney
 partnered to design an experience to create your very own theme park. 
Code at Home Lessons  ALL Girls Who Code has developed a weekly series of resources to help students continue learning 

If you have experienced unemployment or changes in employment status due to COVID-19, please review the resources below:

Latest on Coronavirus for NC, including updates from Governor Cooper | sources   ABC11 News  and  WRAL  

To file for unemployment by filing a claim online, or call 888-737-0259  (phones are only open 8am - 4:30pm, weekdays) 

Helpful information for workers who have had their hours cut back to seek benefits
NC CAP would like to invite program providers to view our NEW STEM lesson, Soda Science. In this lesson, students will be able to design their own soda from scratch, survey their peers, and create their own advertisement for their soda. The Soda Science lessons enables students to feel empowered, inspired, and engaged to continue learning how they can create their own products. 

Each lesson contains video guidance to assist providers. This video will encompass an overview of the lesson, address potential misunderstandings with the lesson for adults and students, and additional activities. This lesson can be completed at home with adult assistance

To access the Soda Science lesson, please click here  

Please subscribe to the NC CAP Youtube Channel for more videos and resources!
NC CAP has partnered with the nationally recognized training agency,  Leading To Change, to provide a highly interactive and informative grant writing workshop! 

Forget the boring, painful, mind-numbing grant writing training that you've heard about. This is the REAL stuff - but with humor, an edge, and lots of chocolate. Designed by REAL Grant Writers and Reviewers, this training focuses on giving you REAL insider tools and techniques to increase your competitiveness immediately on your next grant application!

This one-time professional development  workshop will be offered on Monday, June 1st, 2020 from 10:00am to 4:00pm. The location is to be determined. The cost to attend this workshop is typically $179 per person, but has been discounted to only $25 per person. Registration closes on Wednesday, May 27th, 2020. Space is limited. You can register  here
For this year's Synergy Conference, the NC Center for Afterschool Programs will include youth voices in the conversation about the value of out-of-school time programs for the state of North Carolina. Youth panelists will discuss their experiences in afterschool, before school and summer programs and how their engagement in those programs help them discover who they are and what they love to do. 

Ideal youth panelist are active or recently graduated participants of out-of-school time programs from across the state. Potential panelists can be between the ages of five (5) and twenty (20) years old. The Youth Panel will occur during the Lunch and Awards Ceremony on Thursday, July 30th, 2020 between 11:30am and 1:30pm. Each panelist will be provided a list of potential questions prior to the conference. Selected youth will be awarded a gift card for their contribution to the Synergy Conference 2020 Lunch and Awards Ceremony. 

If you have any youth that would be a perfect fit for the Youth Panel at the Synergy Conference 2020, please nominate them here Parent permission slips will be required upon selection of panelists.

Nominations for the Youth Panel will close on June 1st, 2020.
The NC Center for Afterschool Programs is accepting nominations for the 2020 Afterschool Champions. Nominees should demonstrate outstanding work in developing, supporting and promoting high-quality afterschool and out-of-school time programs to benefit youth and families statewide.

Afterschool Champion Award categories are below, followed by the nomination form. The deadline to submit nomination s is June 15th. Selected award recipients will be recognized during the lunch and award ceremony at the Synergy Conference 2020 on Thursday, July 30th.

This award spotlights an individual, program, or organization whose life or mission has demonstrated outstanding work in developing, supporting and promoting high-quality afterschool and out-of-school time programs to benefit youth and families. Nominees should have more than five (5) years of experience.

This award spotlights an individual, program, or organization whose life or mission has demonstrated considerable work in developing, supporting and promoting high-quality afterschool and out-of-school time programs to benefit youth and families. Nominees should have between two (2) and five (5) years of experience.

A letter of recommendation or support should accompany every nomination. 
**Note: For a program nomination, a letter of support must be from a youth program participant or parent.
The House of Representatives met and put partisanship aside to begin addressing the coronavirus pandemic, with House Bill H.R. 6201. The Families First Coronavirus Response Act passed the House with "yea" votes from 223 Democrats and 140 Republicans. This bill is the beginning of a process of policies and regulations to help communities and is projected to expand paid sick leave access to over 80 million employees. Each bill passed so far get everyone closer to protecting the basic and essential needs of all those affected by this pandemic and keeping people safe. However, this bill is far from perfect in addressing the needs of the children, families, and communities that afterschool programs serve. While providers and networks wait for the Senate to take action on H.R. 6201, Representatives on the Hill are already working on the next series of bills to fill more gaps. Throughout this process, the Afterschool Alliance would love to hear from providers and advocates of out-of-school time programs. How are local, state, and federal leaders responding to the pandemic impacting programs, staff, and families served? The Afterschool Alliance wants to ensure that they share concerns and solutions with policy makers at every level as frequently as possible. 

The current House passed bill, which is likely to be altered, has several provisions that will be helpful to the field. The bill has a number of components including provisions for free testing for all including the uninsured, and other health care issues. 

To learn more about the House Bill H.R. 6201 and communication with the Afterschool Alliance, click here

Excerpt from:
The NC Center for Afterschool Programs is inviting Synergy Conference 2020 attendees to register to attend a First Aid CPR Certification Course. 

Participation in this certification course during the Synergy Course requires an additional fee as required by the CPR certification instructor. For Synergy Conference attendees, the fee has been discounted to $25. Pre-registration is required and space is limited. 

American Safety and Health Institute (ASHI) First Aid CPR AED course will cover a variety of topics to prepare you for your most common injury. The course will cover Emergencies such as seizures, choking, allergies, how to control bleeding, sprains, burns, animal & insect bites, heat stroke, hypothermia and more. The course will also cover how to respond to an unresponsive adult, child or infant with the use of CPR and an AED.  Each participant will leave this course with a CPR Certification, CPR manual, and a key chain mask!  

Pre-r egistration for this CPR Certification Course will end on June 19th, 2020. 
Pre-register here
The North Carolina Center for Afterschool Programs 
(NC CAP) is embarking on exciting new work to expand the amount of STEM opportunities in afterschool programs. High quality afterschool programs have shown to increase student academic performance, behavioral improvements and have been a factor in supporting regular school attendance. To increase these types of opportunities for children and youth throughout the state, it is necessary to develop partnerships and identify resource gaps. The STEM Afterschool Expansion VISTA will increase access to high-quality afterschool programs focusing on STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) fields for youth statewide, particularly those that are growing up in poverty, and establish a community support system that links established afterschool programs with potential partners and STEM resources. This position is based in Raleigh, NC.  
NC CAP wants to highlight your program!
The North Carolina Center for Afterschool Programs would like to highlight program successes statewide. Tell us about your program and you might be our Program Spotlight in the next edition of the Afterschool Observer or on Social Media. Click the Program Spotlight below to be redirected to the updated survey link to tell us about your program. 
The 21st CCLC federal grant funding application deadline has been extended. Programs should provide before and after-school, weekend, or summer school enrichment opportunities for children attending low-performing schools to help them meet local and state academic standards in various subjects. The deadline for the 21st CCLC grant is April 24th, 2020. 

The Burroughs Wellcome Fund application for the 2020 Student STEM Enrichment Program (SSEP) grant awards is open. SSEP supports diverse programs with a common goal: to enable primary and secondary students to participate in creative, hands-on STEM activities for K-12 students and pursue inquiry-based exploration in BWF's home state of North Carolina. These awards provide up to $60,000 per year for three years. The application deadline is June 1st, 2020 .  

The goals of these grants are to: empower youth by providing hands-on environmental stewardship opportunities; inspire youth and communities to become agents of change for their environment; serve as a catalyst for education that uses the environment as a context for applied and STEM learning. The application deadline is July 15th.

Schools, public libraries, and nonprofit organizations who help students that are below grade level or having trouble reading are eligible to apply. Grant funding is provided to assist in the following areas: (1) implementing new or expanding existing literacy programs, (2) purchasing new technology or equipment to support literacy initiatives, (3) purchasing books, materials or software for literacy programs.

Facebook's Engineer for a Week aims to demystify the world of tech by empowering students to build a working tech prototype while developing computer science skills. We believe that all students have the ability to learn to code and we hope to increase access in historically under-served  environments where technology is limited. Through project-based experiences, EFTW hopes to inspire the next generation of diverse engineers.

K-12 schools are eligible to enroll in the sweepstakes and vote daily for their school, until the April 28th deadline. Enter daily for your chance to win $10,000 for STEM at your school. This is your chance to get the STEM technology and resources you need to "fab" your lab.

The M. Jack and Dorothy Stephens Fund was established through an estate gift to Triangle Community Foundation in 2012 to address the needs of disadvantaged people in the communities of southern Wake County. The Foundation invites  501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations, religious entities, and governmental agencies to apply. Organizations must: (1) be based in or predominantly serving the communities in southern Wake County (defined as Garner, Fuquay-Varina, Holly Springs, and Apex), (2) address the needs of disadvantaged people, and (3) meet the Foundation's non-discrimination policy. 

The Sparkplug Foundation funds start-up organizations and new projects of established organizations in music, education, and community organizing. Their particular focus is on "the development of democratic movements and communities, especially those that work on issues of local democracy, justice, and sustainable energy.
To influence policy and serve as a catalyst, convener, and clearinghouse for afterschool programs through advocacy, professional development, and quality improvement. 

High quality afterschool programs accessible to all North Carolina children and youth helping them to succeed in and out of school. 
NC CAP | 919.781.6833 | Email | Website