Children's Arts & Science Workshops, Inc. (CASW) was founded in 1968 to help children and their families develop appreciation for the arts and humanities. Participants in our programs develop cultural interests and creative skills through active involvement in non-competitive, art, dance, music, and theatre workshops. In addition to our cultural component, CASW provides youth and their families with multi-media events, and structured recreational and educational programs. Our services have developed throughout the years to include programs that reinforce academic skills, encourage access to higher education, and develop career goals. CASW strives to inspire inner city youth to become employable and self sufficient. CASW has the longest track record of providing services to children, youth, and their families in the neighborhood of Washington Heights/Inwood. Since our inception, we have focused on providing a comprehensive array of services that address the needs of those we serve.
The Cultural Workshops Program provides 400 youth, ages 5-21, professional training in 32 workshops in dance, music, art, fine arts, mixed media, science, and Tae-Kwan-Do from October through May. Class size averages 12 per unit and all disciplines are offered on several levels to allow for the optimum performance of each participant and to encourage participants to return to the program and advance each year. Cultural enrichment and civic commitment are extended beyond the children to the rest of the community through public theatre and multi-media events which involve parents and other volunteers. The After School Center serves 120 children ages 5-13 from September through June providing effective after school care for children of low income and/or working parents in a safe, structured environment. Their school performance, self-confidence, communication skills, and ultimately their leadership potential are increased. The program includes: homework assistance, educational games, arts in education, cross cultural projects, recreational activities (sports and games) and community service. The Summer Day Camp serves 175 children ages 5-13, during the months of July and August, providing indoor and outdoor recreation, as well as cultural and educational field trips. The Summer Youth Employment & the School Year Youth Employment Programs serves up to 2,000 youth ages 14-21 at over 60 locations throughout the Washington Heights/Inwood area providing work experience in conjunction with educational workshops to ensure that young people have the skills necessary for future employment, to enhance and reinforce basic academic skills, and to promote good citizenship. Support services include computer assisted math and reading, GED, training in health and business careers, and workshops on topics such as youth leadership, conflict resolution, substance abuse, and violence prevention. The Adolescent Vocational Exploration A.V.E. program assists 40 youth, ages 14-17 in defining and clarifying career and post secondary educational goals. A.V.E. combines classroom study, computer assisted training, and counseling, with field exploration (job shadowing, mentoring, and guest speakers) to provide a balanced course of academic and experiential learning to enable youths to have a clearer vision of their educational and career goals. The Rock the Heights program serves 100 youth ages 12-21 providing evening and weekend structured recreational (basketball) and educational activities from October through June. Through basketball the participants learn leadership, teamwork, and raise their self esteem. In addition, educational workshops are held on various topics. (Conflict resolutions, health and safety and violence prevention) The basketball teams partake in a several tournaments (Dyckman Invitational, Peligro Tournaments, and P.A.L. Tournaments) The In-School Program is a federally funded program which uses the 1998 Workforce Investment Act as a guideline for its youth services. This act ensures academic support and work readiness developments. The program serves 300 youths annually, ages 14-18, during the school year while helping them to explore career interests via community service, the arts, job shadowing, internships and speakers. Trips to universities and work locations are scheduled to enable participants to have a realistic experience.