COLLEGE STATION, TEXAS — With class back in session, some families rely on after school programs to provide care until it’s time to head home. Right now, one program here in the Brazos Valley is short on staff and needs counselors to help with their demand of children needing after school care.
“You get to really connect each of them on an individual level and that’s really special,” said Payton Fowler, Supervisor, The Kids Klub. “Those kids don’t always have that opportunity. They don’t always have someone who’s interested in their lives and wants to talk about whatever video game they like or whatever their favorite food is.”
With a current waitlist to attend the Kids Klub from nearly 40 surrounding schools in College Station ISD, there is a high demand for counselors.
“Really if we could get another 40 to 50 staff in, we’d be really solid,” said Rickey Meza, Community Education Supervisor, The Kids Klub. “We’d love to have all the kids in off the waitlist. There’s kids on the waitlist that have been with us for year after year as they’ve gone through school and we’d love to have them back.”
Fowler says having this after school program not only helps take a load off parents that may still be at work, but creates a safe space for children.
“Being able to work with the parents, help their kids be successful in our program so they continue to stay in it and the parents are able to work and do things they need to do while the kids are safe and having fun,” said Fowler.
Fowler was a counselor for a year and a half before being promoted to supervisor, and for her, it was all about finding her purpose.
“I enjoy having a meaningful job,” said Fowler. “I’ve worked fast food and retail and those jobs are fine, they pay the bills, but to me, I like having a job where it’s more meaningful everyday. You feel like you have purpose, actually making a difference in a kid’s life.”
Working at the Kids Klub is a full circle moment for Meza as he used to attend when he was in school.
He says they would need close to 200 counselors to be fully staffed.
“If we were really fully staffed, you’re talking about people with class conflicts and things like that with their staff, we’re looking at 150 to 180 people just staff wise,” said Meza. “We got a ways to go before we get there.”
The program serves children from kindergarten through sixth grade with a variety of activities from indoor to outdoor games, arts and crafts, and optional homework time.
If you are interested in becoming a counselor at the Kids Klub, you can find application details here: The Kids Klub - Employment (google.com).