Long-Standing After School Program Ends

Elise Preston
NewsChannel 10

AMARILLO, TX - Tuesday night, the "Students Off the Streets" activities center, also known as the S.O.S. center closed its doors for good. The center was just a week shy of its 16th anniversary and has provided a safe haven for thousands of children in North East Amarillo.

About 70 kids attended the SOS center. The North Branch YMCA says it can take about 20 of those children and enroll them in the YES program. However, they must be over the age of ten. The children must also find transportation to get to the "Y's" program. S.O.S. Administrators tell NewsChannel 10, nearly half of the kids that utilized the center, were under the age of ten.

Even if the "Y" takes 20 children, there are still about 50 without an after school program to go to. Maverick Boys and Girls Club board members tell NewsChannel 10, the club could possibly make room, but a long-term commitment in donations and volunteers is needed in order for the program to take on more kids.

"It breaks my heart that we can't. The Texas Panhandle is very giving and caring and we need to have these kids taken care of." said Cheryl Stallings, past president and current member of the Maverick Boys and Girls Club Board of Directors.

NewsChannel 10 spoke with some of the kids as they said their goodbyes. The children tell NewsChannel 10,  they will miss their friends and come Monday, they aren't sure where they will go.