The Phil Gainer Community Center in Elkins has been working to fill a void in Randolph County and officials said they are well on their way.
ENGAGE Afterschool started at the beginning of the school year and is designed to provide middle school-aged students with a safe space after school to enjoy a little downtime and group activities. Nearly 30 middle school students from around the area head over to the center after school each day, and officials said they hope the program continues to grow.
“The biggest part of this program’s success is that it has, kind of, filled a void in programming that has existed in this area for a long time. What we are hoping is that we can provide a safe place for the parents to send their kids but also a fun place for the kids to want to come,” said Phil Gainer Community Center Facility Manager Chris Lee.
The program received funding from the Randolph County Commission and assistance from Davis & Elkins College to fund and staff the program.
Officials hope to grow the program into other areas of the county in the near future.