Private Organization Accreditation

HeartShare assist individuals with developmental disabilities through education, day, residential and recreation programs, case management, and health services, and provides foster care/adoption services, counseling, after school and energy assistance programs, and programs for people with HIV/AIDS.


Judy Kay, LCSW

Volunteer Roles: Peer Reviewer; Team Leader

In administration for 22 of 24 years at Child Saving Institute, a COA-accredited not-for-profit child welfare agency in Omaha, Nebraska. Retired approximately two years ago, I moved to Tucson, Arizona, where I advocate for children's rights as a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) volunteer to three young children.
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Children and youth who participate in After School and Youth Development programs gain the personal, social, emotional, and educational assets needed to support healthy development, increase well-being, and facilitate a successful transition through childhood, adolescence, and into adulthood.


After School and Youth Development programs engage school-age children and youth in a variety of social, educational, and recreational activities appropriate to their needs, interests, and abilities; promote the development of positive relationships with adults and peers; and provide a physically and emotionally safe environment for young people to spend their out-of-school time hours.  Programs may operate at different times, including before school, after school, mid-day, on weekends, and during school vacations, including summer vacations.  They may also refer to themselves using other terms, such as “school age care,” “out-of-school time,” or “youth development.”  As noted in the Glossary, children and youth from the ages of five to eighteen are considered to be of “school age,” and this Service Standard is designed to accommodate programs serving a variety of age groups within that range.  For example, while one program might serve only children in elementary school, another might be specifically designed for high school youth.  In some cases standards include specific guidance (e.g., Interpretations, Examples, or NAs) to clarify how the standard might apply to children and youth of a particular age range.  When standards reference “older youth,” this includes middle- and high-school students (i.e., youth age 13 and up).

Research Note: Positive youth development emphasizes the importance of helping young people develop the social, emotional, cognitive, and physical assets that can help them transition to responsible adulthood.  Accordingly, community- and school-based programs for children and youth are often designed to provide the supports and opportunities that may help young people have positive developmental experiences and improve the long-term chances that they will be personally, emotionally, and socially stable, involved in their communities, and economically secure.  Although some young people have more unmet needs than others, all children and youth may benefit from access to the supports and opportunities that promote resilience and healthy development.

Note: When standards include multiple examples of ways to demonstrate implementation of the standard, every example will not necessarily be relevant and appropriate for every program.  Rather, the examples are intended to provide guidance by illustrating a variety of different ways to show that a standard is being met.  Standards may also be met in other ways not included in the lists of potential examples.

Note: Please see CYD-AYD Reference List for a list of resources that informed the development of these standards.

After School and Youth Development Narrative

Self-Study Evidence
    • Provide an overview of the program being accredited. The overview should describe:
      1. the program’s approach to providing programming and serving children, youth, and families;
      2. eligibility criteria; and
      3. how the program ensures it is providing culturally competent programming.
    • If any portion of the programming is provided to children, youth, and families by contract with outside providers, provide a list that identifies the other providers and the programming components for which they are responsible. Do not include services provided by referral.
    • Provide any other information you would like the Endorsers to know about your program.
    • A demographic profile of children and youth served by the program, with percentages representing the following:
      1. age;
      2. gender;
      3. major language groups;
      4. major religious groups; and
      5. racial and ethnic characteristics
    • A list that includes:
      1. the average number of participants per session (e.g., morning session, afternoon session, etc.), in the last month; and
      2. the total number of participants per session, in the last month
    • Describe any significant obstacles and innovations experienced by the program.
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