A Place to Call Home : After-School Programs for Urban Youth by Barton Jay Hirsch
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Through original and provocative analysis, author Barton J. Hirsch describes his research conducted over a four year period at six Boys & Girls Clubs?all located in low income, urban neighborhoods. Hirsch shows that while formal psycho-educational programs often fail to reach their full potential informal ?programs? meet the needs of the urban youth by drawing upon and replicating the positive features of the youth's familial environment and peer group. Staff members first engage, and then socialize, youth toward positive identities by the use of recreational activities and wide-ranging mentoring relationships. These club environments are repeatedly referred to as a ?second home? or a ?home-away-from-home? by participating youth and seem to thrive without formal programs and instruction. Clinical and community psychologists, social workers, and policy markers will discover much from Hirsch's analysis, abundant case illustrations, and verbatim field notes as well as fascinating quantitative results describing these successful after school environments.

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