Lights On Afterschool

Each October, one million Americans, and more than 7,500 communities nationwide celebrate the afterschool programs that keep kids safe, inspire them to learn, and help working families. 

Lights On Afterschool is a national advocacy day where afterschool programs across the nation host events to celebrate their programs and increase awareness about the importance of afterschool. Lights On Afterschool was launched in October 2000 with celebrations in 1,200 communities nationwide.  The following year 3,600 events took place.  Today, more than 7,500 Lights On Afterschool rallies are held annually, attracting 1 million Americans and media coverage nationwide. Lights On Afterschool is a project of the Afterschool Alliance. 

October 28th, 2021 is the date for this year’s Lights On Afterschool Day. We want North Carolina to have a record number of events in 2021, so be sure to register with the Afterschool Alliance!

The Afterschool Alliance provides tools and resources to host successful Lights On Afterschool events, including an event planning kit. The Afterschool Alliance and NC CAP encourages all programs and organizations to register their events, so we can have a record of events each year. When you register your event, you will receive an event starter kit that includes posters, buttons, and more! Your registration will also enter you in weekly contests for cool prizes!  

You can register your event here

Lights On Afterschool 2021 Celebration

Join us to reflect, celebrate, and call attention to the afterschool programs that are so critical to youth and families during the 22nd annual Lights On Afterschool. The North Carolina Center for Afterschool Programs will be celebrating Lights On Afterschool throughout the month of October with an array of virtual activities and events. Review the details below to find ways to participate in the celebration of afterschool programs across North Carolina.

Schedule of NC CAP Events

Join the North Carolina Center for Afterschool Programs (NC CAP) on Tuesday, October 5th, at 2 p.m. EST for a virtual briefing of new statewide recommendations regarding science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) pathways. The publication “Addressing the Top 5 Issues within STEM Pathways in North Carolina” provides insights into the five common issues noted across sectors and industries. It is based on the responses of over 100 STEM Coalition members from various backgrounds, sectors, and organizations.

The STEM coalition, or STEMco, is the collaborative efforts of professionals throughout North Carolina to amplify diversity, inclusion, and equity within STEM pathways. The STEMco develops strategies to ensure that more youth, particularly girls and minorities, are involved in STEM as early as Kindergarten. Each sector in attendance provides a unique perspective on investing in the future STEM workforce.

To register, click HERE.

The North Carolina Center for Afterschool Programs (NC CAP) is hosting a FREE virtual event for out-of-school time professionals to discover ways to leverage the James Webb Space Telescope launch and mission milestones in their programs. Participants will have the opportunity to engage with a content matter expert and access free resources and content aligned to the Webb Space Telescope launch and mission. This event is open to professionals in North Carolina and across the nation.

To register, click HERE.

On October 28th, 2021, the North Carolina Center for Afterschool Programs will be celebrating Lights On Afterschool Day by engaging in statewide advocacy with program providers. In addition to advocacy, there are events happening across the state to participate in! To view a list of events happening in North Carolina, click HERE.

Throughout the month of October, NC CAP will be showcasing the “Journey Series” via social media. The “Journey Series” spotlights out-of-school time professionals statewide and the career pathways that led them to serve youth in out-of-school time. Every professional has a unique story.

Be sure to follow us on Twitter (@ncafterschool), Facebook (@ncafterschool), and Instagram (@nc_afterschool) to check out all of the unique stories and journeys that have led providers to serve youth in out-of-school time programs across North Carolina. Be sure to use #LightsOnAfterschool to engage in the Lightbulb Challenge or see what is happening across the nation!