Second Annual NH Afterschool Provider Celebration

June 27, 2019

The Second Annual NH Afterschool Professionals Celebration took place in June at the NH Audubon McLane Center in Concord, NH. Over 100 people joined together to recognize and celebrate the contributions of afterschool. 


Gail Casey, from the 21st Century Extended Day Program of Nashua, began the event by welcoming afterschool professionals and stakeholders to the celebration. After opening remarks from Kimberly Meyer, the Interim NHAN Project Director, Andrea Knowles and Jane Cutter, from Marcom 4, unveiled NHAN's new logo design and discussed upcoming updates to NHAN's communication tools to improve connections with stakeholders and partners. Staff members attended from the offices of Senator Shaheen, Senator Hassan, Rep. Custer, and Rep Pappas to support afterschool in NH, delivering letters from Congress members. 


The Keynote Session included passionate speakers. Dr. Will Arvelo from the NH Division of Economic Development spoke about the contribution afterschool makes to NH's workforce and the importance of making the afterschool voice heard in NH. Jacqui Guillette, retired superintendent and Capstone Consulting representative, poignantly shared how critical afterschool is for NH youth to build hope for their future. Finally, the Laconia Middle School Student Panel offered a student perspective on how afterschool programming positively impacts them. 


Susan Gimilaro of ACROSS NH and Jamie Calcagni of DHHS presented thirteen individuals with Afterschool Credentials in four categories: Afterschool Direct Service, Afterschool Administrator, Workshop Trainer, and Afterschool Master Professional. 


Laconia Superintendent Brendan Minnihan and Nashua Assistant Superintendent Garth McKenney were recognized as Afterschool Champions. Lastly, the Thad Mandsager Award was presented to outstanding afterschool professional Pablo Hernandez of Nashua 21 CCLC by Conrad Mandsager.


Thank you to everyone who attended and helped with the Second Annual NH Afterschool Professionals Celebration, especially Big Brothers, Big Sisters of NH, Nashua Prevention Coalition, the New Hampshire Charitable Foundation, Marcom4, NH DOE, NH DHHS, NH BEA, Southern District YMCA, and Eastside Learning Center. This event was sponsored by NH Interlocal Trust and FB Environmental LLC.

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Mindfulness, SEL: ‘Something Uniquely Human About That Ability to Connect and to Care’

December 08, 2017

New Hampshire's Rick Alleva was interviewed by Melody McLaurin for "Youth Today." Read about his concerns, challenges, resources and mindful advice for those working with youth today. Here is a bit of the article: 


Rick Alleva is a field specialist at the University of New Hampshire and co-author of a curriculum called Courage to Care,” which promotes empathy for middle schoolers. He has been researching and promoting positive youth development and the use of mindful learning as well as social and emotional learning (SEML) for many years.

After graduating from Tufts University with a degree in psychology, he traveled cross-country, coming across many teenage runaways. That later heightened his interest in helping at-risk children in particular.

His first job with youth was in 1976 when angel dust, or PCP, was in its heyday. “We worked with a lot of kids who were challenged by their experience and the criminality connected to the whole epidemic back then,” Alleva said. “That’s how I cut my teeth” in the field. Youth Today’s Melody McLaurin asked him a series of questions about his work. His answers have been lightly edited.

To read the article in "Youth Today" go to

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Innovating NH Afterschool for Tomorrow’s Workforce

October 13, 2017

On Friday, October 13th, afterschool leaders and community partners joined together for breakfast, conversation, networking, and collaboration around strategies to support afterschool and employer/business partnerships that will prepare youth for success in tomorrow’s workforce.  Rick Alleva, of the UNH Cooperative Extension, capped the morning with our annual Lights On Afterschool Kick-off for 2017!


Our keynote speaker was Sara Colson, the Director of Workforce Accelerator 2025 at Business and Industry Association of New Hampshire’s Statewide Chamber of Commerce.  Sara discussed New Hampshire’s need for a highly-skilled workforce. Research indicates that 65% of the adult workforce will need to possess a meaningful credential or post-secondary degree by the year 2025 in order to meet demands of our state’s economy.


Christine Gingerella, from the Office of Extended Learning in Laconia and Lisa Dubois, the Laconia Middle School Site Coordinator, shared their positive experience and feedback from the 2016 Summer Learning Camp 2016 at Laconia.  A panel of that included community partners and teachers shared their experiences that involved partnership, teaching, new skills and fun.  Also at hand was Kimberly Meyer, representing the Bank of NH, who participated and was a sponsor of the program.

Participants had time to network and share experiences that work in their communities, and supported other afterschool programs in ways to reach out and get connected with the local businesses and employers.


By partnering with local businesses, afterschool and summer learning programs can offer unique, real-world experiences that help young people develop critical workforce skills, explore potential career paths and connect with opportunities that encourage them to stay in New Hampshire.

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NHAN Lead Participates in Round Table

September 20, 2017

MaryLou Beaver, NHAN Lead, participated in a Round Table to discuss ways to support children in NH who are suffering from the current opioid crisis.  Congresswoman Annie Kuster, Salem Boys and Girls Club COO Mark Abreau, and Salem Family Resources Executive Director Cindy Jury and Senator Chuck Morse also participated in the panel.  Go to to read about the discussion in the Eagle Tribune.

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NHAN is a project of SERESC (Southeastern Regional Education Service Center), is funded by the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation and is affiliated with the National AfterSchool Association.