About my Spark Denver

All kids should have access to experiences that spark joy and purpose.

4 students sitting at their desks with a teacher standing in the middle, pointing to one of their books

Why does Denver need My Spark?

We know that students involved in extracurricular activities after school and during the summer months see many benefits now and into their futures.

Young people who have a variety of opportunities for positive learning and enrichment activities engage in less risky behavior and have higher rates of successful transitions into adulthood.

Youth who say they have a trusted adult or group of peers they connect with regularly report more feelings of hopefulness about the future.

Students who regularly attend afterschool programs are 26% more likely to finish the school year at or on track for grade level reading compared to their peers who do not attend afterschool programs.

My Spark Denver has been launched through a partnership with the City and County of Denver, Mile High United Way, and Gary Community Ventures. The goal of My Spark Denver is to increase access to extracurricular activities that can have positive benefits for youth. The program does that by providing funds directly to students and families so that they can choose the youth activities that they’re most interested in.

The first year of the program (2023-2024) is a pilot to show what is possible when more young people in our city have access to afterschool and extracurricular activities that spark joy and purpose. This year, My Spark Denver will serve up to 4,000 Denver Public School middle school students whose families are eligible for free or reduced price lunch.

Enrolled families will receive a $1,000 debit card that can only be used to enroll their student in one of the programs participating in My Spark Denver. After a student and their family has received their My Spark Card, they can sign up for the extracurricular or afterschool programs of their choice.

A group of 5 teenagers in a field, standing in a line and smiling at the camera.