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88Nine Radio Milwaukee

Today's stream is sponsored by Maxie's

"Meet The Need": Day 15 | Neu Life Community Resource Center, Jody Rhodes

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Listen: We hit week three of Meet The Need running, Day 15 of 50, with Neu Life Community Resource Center. Funny thing, I bike/bus by their main building every day, off the corner of North Avenue and Fond Du Lac, and I never noticed the building before (see below). I asked Director of Neu Life why it's never jumped out at me and she give me a very clear answer -- why would she spend money on signs when she could spend it on programming for her kids? Point well taken. Not only is Neu Life completely focused on programming, but they develop it in a subtly innovative way; they ask kids what they want to do. If kids don't want to participate in a program, no matter how good that program is for them in theory, it is not a good program. Successful after school programs view themselves as a competitor for the kids' time. What do youth need? Alternatives to being idle and rudderless. If you manage to structure what they want to do, they'll be willing and eager. In these four pieces, Jody gives us an inside perspective on how they shape their work around the kids:

-The need for Neu Life and what they do: [audio=1] -Jody said to me, "If we're going to do a youth program for kids, let's do a good one. Let's do a high quality one." Find out what she means by high quality: [audio=2] -Consider the alternative to what these kids would be doing without Neu LIfe: [audio=3] -The story of K, a young man that went from having serious anger management issues to a Neu Life leader: [audio=4] For more information on Neu Life Community Resource Center visit their bustling Facebook page (talk about engaging youth on their own term!), and if you'd like to help New Life meet their needs this holiday season, learn how you can contact them here. Produced by: Adam Carr