Food Brings Hope partnered with Westside Elementary School’s after school program called, Westside’s Night Alive (WNA), to provide students with supplemental enrichment activities in a safe environment. Westside's program thrives with more than 150 participating students who receive extra tutoring in reading, math and science as well as opportunities to enjoy extra-curricular programming such as fitness, dancing, gardening, etc. Food Brings Hope offers these children various cultural experiences such as the Daytona State College Holiday Concert, ERAU basketball game, Coins for Children, Enrichment Camp meals, Daytona International Speedway trip, Sports and Nutrition Day and the student rewards program for high achievement.
Like Campbell Middle, Westside’s Night Alive (WNA) is funded through the 21st Century Community Learning Centers Grant and is supplemented by Food Brings Hope's support. Some key programs offered to WNA students include:
The science program which focuses on skills needed in the core curriculum as well as a robotics curriculum that was introduced with a grant from NASA.
The individual fitness and team sports program focuses on skills needed for tennis, basketball, track and field, soccer, use of the outdoor fitness park and more.
The Ballroom Dance program is run by a teacher from USA Dance. The students are taught the proper dance moves and performed at the holiday extravaganza.
Yoga was taught by a former VCS physical educator and a certified children’s yoga instructor.
Band is for grades three through five and performs at various events throughout the year.
Early Act Rotary Club is run under the guidance of Daytona Beach Rotary Club members and VCS teachers. The students learn the core values of helping others and does community outreach projects.
The gardening program was begun by the Early Act Rotary Club. Volunteers got together and donated time and supplies to build a vegetable, herb, and butterfly garden on the grounds of Westside. In addition a Lowe’s Toolbox for Education Grant was awarded to the school and an outdoor learning center was built in the same area.
Newspaper writing was initiated with fourth grade students and they focused on putting out a WNA/ FBH newsletter for parents.
Food Brings Hope and Westside's Principal, Judi Winch, feel strongly that programs such as these introduce students to opportunities they may never have thought possible and provide them with tools to help them make their own way in life. In a nutshell, they give kids hope!