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Middle Childhood Matters  An Educational Evening

Toronto City Hall – Rotunda and Committee Rooms

Tuesday Jan 21 from 4-7 p.m. (RSVP Here)

Got a gripe about the lack of good out-of-school-time care? You are not alone.

Coalition group Middle Childhood Matters will host an educational evening next Tuesday, Jan. 21 at City Hall to draw broader attention to something every parent knows – children from the ages of six to 12 need quality care during all the hours and days that they are not in school.

We’re talking after-school, March Break, summer holidays, PA days – what have you.

And next Tuesday’s after-school event is gonna be AWESOME for kids: they can get busy with digital learning network Hive Toronto, empathy-building toys and games by 21 Toys, the awesome Textile Museum and Toronto’s MAKELAB. Amazing!

For parents, the Jan. 21 event is an opportunity for meaningful discussion with service providers and elected officials about sustainable options for out-of-school-time programs. It’s no surprise to parents that families are feeling increasing stress as they work hard to stay afloat — last week’s much-remarked upon CBC documentary The Motherload is testament to that.

We are struggling to juggle work and family life. For a decade, Middle Childhood Matters has provided a united voice to build awareness about this important time in a child’s life. According to Amanda Penrice of Middle Childhood Matters, the economic systems in the city profoundly affect 180,000 children in the 6-12 age group, due to changes in their parents’ employment, income inequality and community safety.

Penrice wants next Tuesday’s event to act as a springboard for future collaboration: “This includes the opportunity to integrate technologies — and maker-based activities — into existing out-of-school-time programs in Toronto.”

“As we move into 2014, we need have to share our stories with elected officials and ask them how they can help improve the system — and invest in children,” she adds. “This is not just a Toronto issue. We need people to champion this message throughout Ontario and across Canada, so we can have a well-funded sustainable system.”

What parent wouldn’t agree?

It all goes down next Tuesday, starting at 4 p.m. Get to City Hall by 5:30 p.m. for a musical performance and special presentation, and find out other ways you can become involved here.

And check out 21 Toys’ Empathy and Creative Dialogue toy in action below:

RSVP at the eventbrite page — and share the info with friends on Facebook.

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